Financial Freedom: Prosperity & Love

How is Love Like Blueberry Pancakes?

“Do you think he will be there?” one of my daughter’s friends asks her.

“I don’t know, but maybe,” my daughter, Katy, answers to many giggles.

(I am driving 7 girls to the mall as part of Katy’s birthday party and it always amazes me the kids don’t realize that we drivers are listening to their conversations.)

“Well, do you like him?”

“I don’t know, maybe.”

“Should we text him?”

“I don’t know, maybe.”

The conversation swirls around boys and an escalating amount of giggles. As 6th grade nears its end, the girls are becoming much more interested in the boys and the conversations are now filtered with this boy this and that boy that.

I am calm, however, as I remember a situation Katy and I lived a few years ago that has become a featured reference in our lives.

We are skiing and Greg and Nick are off racing as usual. Katy and I are in line for a four-person chairlift as I notice a few high school girls in front of us. I observe them checking out the high school boys next to us and know they are part of the same group. The girls are definitely interested in the boys as they talk and giggle to each other with effusive gestures and much hair flipping.

The girls hop onto the chairlift in front of us and we get onto one with the boys.

Katy and I are enjoying the scenery as I listen to the boys talking.

“Oh man I ate so much at breakfast,” one of the boys says to the other.

“I know. I had the blueberry pancakes. They were great,” the other answers.

“I ate so many, I am going to burst.”

“The orange juice was great too. I wish I had some now.”

“I had so much maple syrup.”

“The pancakes were so fluffy.”

This conversation continues the entire way up the mountain.

As I listen to the boys, I observe the girls in front of us. They are animated and coyly looking back to see if the boys are watching.

Now, I giggle. Well, actually chuckle. This is hilarious.

Katy looks at me to tell her why I am laughing and I shake my head to let her know I will tell her later.

The chairlift reaches the top and we all disembark to go our respective ways. We ski to the side of the trail and Katy motions me to stop.

“Mom, tell me why you are laughing,” Katy insists.

I chuckle. I just cannot help it as I explain the situation to Katy.

“Did you see those girls in front of us?”

“The pretty ones in the purple, aqua and black jackets?”

“Yes, they are with the boys on our chairlift. Did you notice the girls looking back at us?”

“I did. Why did they do that?”

“The girls know the boys and are interested in them. The girls are talking, laughing and wondering whether the boys are thinking and talking about them.”

“But the boys were talking about breakfast! The whole time.” Katy giggles.

“Yes, they were – the entire time! When you grow up and get interested in boys, remember this. When you are wondering if the boys are thinking and talking about you, know they are not. They are talking about blueberry pancakes.”

Katy giggles again and shakes her head as she skis down the mountain. She is eight at this point and has no interest in boys.

Now, however, whenever the girls start talking about boys. Katy and I look at each other and know. The boys are not thinking and talking about them. They are probably talking about something mundane. They are probably talking about breakfast.

So we look at each other and nod.

At the same time, we mouth “Blueberry pancakes.”

How many times have you wondered if someone has been thinking of you? Have you ever been caught up in the throes of a story you’re reliving in your mind, imagining someone else is reliving it in theirs too?

Maybe, they are.

And maybe, they aren’t.

Maybe they’re thinking about blueberry pancakes, when you’re consumed with thoughts of them.

How much brain space can you free up by not over-thinking these types of scenarios?

What a self-love exercise and something to ponder.

As always, wishing you joy,


Financial Freedom: Prosperity & Love

Why Do You Want to Be Like a Puppy?

“Oh no,” I think to myself as I watch my 11-year-old daughter walk out of her new middle school during the first week of September. She looks sullen, moody, and completely lacking in energy.

“How was your day?” I ask gently.

“It was okay,” is her quiet response.

“What is wrong? You don’t look happy.”

“No one is talking to me. I don’t have any friends.”

Okay, Moms, you know – immediate heart bleed.

I contemplate where to go with this. I can calmly provide support. I can probe. I can give advice. This is a conundrum as anything I say will have major import and this needs to be handled delicately.

Then it hits me.

“I love cats and I love puppies,” I begin slowly, “I love cats because they’re mysterious, quiet and self-sufficient. I love puppies, because they’re fun and cute and so friendly. They love everyone and always make people happy with their boundless joy.”

“Oh, I love puppies too!” she exclaims, sitting up straighter in her seat. “They play together and jump and chase balls. They’re so fluffy and cute. I just love them!”

“Well, which would you rather be? Would you rather be a cat or a puppy?” I ask.

“Oh, I would rather be a puppy. They have so much fun.”

“Well, at school, which do you think you’re being right now? Are you being a cat or are you being a puppy?”

She thinks about this for quite a long time and sheepishly replies, “I think I’m being a cat.”

“I think you are too. Do you think other people feel comfortable saying ‘Hi’ to someone who’s mysterious and quiet? Or do you think they’d be more comfortable saying ‘Hi’ to someone who’s open and happy?”

“I think they’d be more comfortable saying ‘Hi’ to someone who’s happy.”

“I think you’re right.”

“I think I’m going to be a puppy from now on.”

Fast-forward a few months and she’s going to dances and movies and shopping. She has had a Halloween trick-or-treat adventure and is planning a ‘Beat the Winter Blues’ sleepover.

I’m thankful that these words were at the ready when I needed them and we have used the cat/puppy comparison on many occasions since that day.

During this love exploration, I want to introduce the cats and puppies philosophy of life to each of you.

I feel that girls start out as kitties and grow into cats and boys start out as puppies and grow into dogs.

Think about it.

Kitties and puppies frolic and play. They live in the moment, love everyone & everything, and are open, playful and joyful. Little girls and boys are so similar and then as they grow, girls become like cats – quiet, mysterious, independent, self-sufficient. While boys become like dogs – still playful, open and approachable.

We need these differences as they make up the tapestry of relationships, love, and community. However, as women, we have a choice of how we approach our inner and outer worlds. We can choose to be catlike or puppy-like.

When we are cat-like, we feel powerful with our contemplative stares, seeming disengagement, and independence. We reign over others with our superiority. Yet, to be this way, all day and every day, would create a world of one. It would be lonely.

So, at times, we’re puppy-like. We engage others with openness and accessibility. We can choose, so it’s available to us at any time.

Think about the older people in your life. Picture them in your mind’s eye. Who’s happier: the puppy-like people or the catlike people?

When I think about one of the happiest people I had the joy and good fortune to know, I think of my husband’s Aunt Julie. When I met her, she was almost 80 years old and she was telling a story about riding a motorcycle and breaking her leg. She was animated and sparkling and laughing about it. I thought she was telling a story that happened long ago.

Oh, not true. It was 3 weeks prior. I found that out when I looked down and saw her leg in a cast!

Auntie Julie was the most puppy-like person I have ever met and she was one of the happiest. She approached everything with wonder and joy. What a way to live life!

My daughter and I now look at people as we walk by and call out puppy or cat to each other. Bar none: the puppies are happy.

I think I want to live my life as a puppy – with openness, joy and wonder. I invite you to join me, especially in this season of love. Perhaps it can be our intentional resolution for the rest of the year.

As always, wishing you joy,



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