46 Things in 46 Years 

Written by my wonderful mother ~

 1. Have dessert for dinner.

2. Stay up late, wake up early.

3. Go camping.

4. Pray

5. Exercise. No matter what. You will always feel better after it.

6. Take naps.

7. Make coffee dates with your grandmother, consistently.

8. If you want something, ask. Always.

9. That stain on your shirt? That pimple? Your flat/frizzy hair? Those 3 pounds you gained? No one, and I mean no one, is noticing it. Only you.

10. Take mental health days.

11. Every home needs an animal.

12. Every home needs a baby.

13. Thinking about going back to school?? Do it. Time is going to pass anyway-go to college.

14. When a person is quiet and doesn’t smile, that doesn’t mean they are mean or rude. Be the one to talk and smile. You will see the change in them, even for only a brief moment.

15. Strike up conversations with strangers. Especially the elderly. While in line, at restaurants, etc. their stories are fascinating.

16. Those things you said you’d never do or weren’t interested in? Do them. Step out of your box.

17. Embrace the differences in people. These differences make: the work day go faster, raising kids an exciting, adventurous challenge, various opportunities to learn in social settings, hanging with friends humorous and makes families what they should be; unique and loved unconditionally.

18. When a child sees you, light up like they are the best gift you could have ever been given. Each and every time.

19. Sit on the floor/grass with your children. It means a lot to them and their vantage point is amazing.

20. Love someone? Tell them AND show them.

21. During times of sadness, feeling overwhelmed, etc. take one day at a time. Sometimes it’s one hour at a time.

22. When someone tells you that you hurt them, you don’t get to decide that you didn’t. -Louis CK

23. Be messy, and complicated and afraid, and show up anyway. -Glennon Doyle Melton

24. It’s never too late to make a big change. Big changes are the scariest, yet the most rewarding in the end. You will then wonder why you didn’t do it earlier.

25. Do NOT do what is expected.

26. Rules are meant to be broken (learned this from my child) History gets made when you act a fool.

27. You can respect a role without respecting the person.

28. Listen to the person talking to you. Truly listen, do not just wait to respond. Make eye contact and don’t look away at other things.

29. Accept apologies. But, only accept sincere, straight-from-the-heart apologies from someone who rarely needs to apologize.

30. Apologize. Look them in the eye, tell them why you are sorry and learn from it. Make it a point to not have to apologize to that person again.

31. Good people make bad decisions. They just do. Even the kindest, most compassionate people make poor decisions.

32. It’s okay to disagree with someone. Do it respectfully.

33. SOMETIMES, ask for forgiveness instead of permission (another tip learned from my child).

34. If there is a toxic person in your life, even if a family member, you CAN choose to NOT have them in your life. Your choice. Simple.

35. Ask others: “Are you okay?” and “How can I help?”

36. Laugh. Laugh a lot and daily. Need help with it? Watch Ellen, Kevin Hart or anything Robin Williams.

37. Empathy is important, extremely important. Gotta have it. Make sure your kids have it.

38. Dance! Dance in the kitchen. Dance with your small kids. Dance with your grown kids. Dance in the car.

39. Compliment others.

40. When someone does something that you appreciate, tell them. Do this often.

41. Sometimes, you just have to say (and convince yourself) “It is what it is”.

42. Have family game nights.

43. Spend oodles of time with your parents.

44. Write down the funny/not so funny things your kids say and do.

45. Never stop dating your spouse.

46. Marry that person that agrees with all 45 of the above tips.


22 Things in 22 Years

  1. A bad night won’t last forever.
  2. Have patience.. with everything. It can really go a long way.
  3. Take whatever career path you desire, even if it’s not guaranteed to make you a lot of money. Your happiness means more than money every damn time.
  4. The only key to your happiness is within yourself. Your happiness is not someone else’s responsibility.
  5. To continue off that, just because you have a boyfriend does not mean your life will be perfect. You just have someone to comfort you when life isn’t perfect.
  6. And to continue off that, your life will never be perfect. Roll with the punches.
  7. Shit happens to everyone, got that? You’re not the only one going through shit.
  8. Smile in your selfies, even if it shows your eye wrinkles.
  9. Everything has the potential of being temporary: that boy, a friend, this feeling.
  10. Enjoy what is good while you can, and exercise your patience while it’s bad.
  11. High school is not the best years of your life. 
  12. Exercising is good, but so is that pizza.
  13. When in doubt: Treat. Yo. Self.
  14. Life is too short to put up with shitty people.
  15. It’s important to learn to appreciate your alone time.
  16. People may disappoint you, but that is not always a true indicator of their character.
  17. Treat everyone like they are your best friend.
  18. Never go to bed mad at someone, especially your child, parent, or significant other. You know what they say about not knowing what tomorrow will bring…
  19. People are different. This shouldn’t scare you. Differences are beautiful.
  20. Popcorn completes a movie.
  21. Love always wins.
  22. There is no other person in the world like you. There is no one else you were meant to be. You are you, and you are beautiful. ❤22

Writing is Hard™

This is more of a ramblin’ post, so I am sorry if it is messy or confusing, but here are my feelings, friends:

I’ve loved writing since I was a kid. I would write little “silly” short stories, and even some autobiographies, which made my mom claim that I was her favorite author. I was convinced that some day I was gonna be professional writer. (Little did I realize how difficult it would be to write a whole novel.)

Writing has been hard lately, especially this past year. I have had a whole jumble of words in my mind, but I have just been unable to get the words out on the page (or computer screen, let’s be real.) I had hoped that maybe it was just college getting in the way, which was a feasible excuse. Once summer hit, I had high hopes that I would be doing a lot more writing.

Well, I was wrong. Writing is hard and I am struggling with it and, basically, I don’t know how to go on.

I don’t know where to go exactly as per a writing theme for my blog. Should it simply be for my creative writings? Should I make it a book blog? Is it okay to keep it a mix of things? Am I even meant to have a blog?

I guess I just haven’t developed my own sense of blogging and writing style yet, which hurts my soul because I want it more than anything.

I partly believe I have been struggling with my writing because I feel my writing is not good enough. (Fun fact: I never feel good enough about anything. I am merely mediocre just wingin’ life.) Writing is clearly just a hobby of mine, whereas other people take it so much more seriously because it is their actual career. Yikes.  I read all kinds of blog posts, magazines, journal articles, etc. and become in awe of how well some people write; I’m constantly impressed with the way people put words together and obtain the ability to tell such fantastic stories. If they can write that good, then where does my writing even fit in the grand scheme of things? Where do my words have a place in this world?

When I tell people this, they give me advice, such as “Just write!” “Write for thirty minutes each day!” And, I’m sorry, but that is BS. If I were to try to follow that “write for thirty minutes” rule, it would just stress me out more about writing, so I don’t think it is something that would make me fall in love with writing again.I have about 20 drafts saved on here, with great ideas and topics that I am actually really proud of, but I just can’t seem to bring myself to actually write them. Writing just is not as invigorating as it was before; it now seems more exhausting. It seems that, lately, only on a rare day does writing enthuse me like it used to. (Oh, how I miss that feeling.)

I don’t have a large audience that reads my writing on my blog. It sucks, I wish I had more readers, I wish my blog was able to reach more people, because maybe that would encourage my writing more. This sounds kind of pathetic to be putting out there, but it is the truth. I am not feeling encouraged to write because no one else is relying on me to write. (I’m a people pleaser, what can I say?) My boyfriend has told me, on multiple occasions, to write for me, not for my readers. This advice  was probably the most helpful writing advice I have received. I want to start writing to impress myself, because who cares who is viewing my work and if they like it?

I have a lot farther to go in my writing journey as well as a pretty big hole to dig out of. I have a lot of confidence that needs built, with many other things besides writing.

Writing is what gives me happiness but also makes me feel super lonely and withdrawn.

I just wanna be a bomb ass writer, but at the same time I don’t feel motivated to write at all. A conundrum at it’s finest.

Writing is hard.

Doug’s Story

A little bit about Doug:

Douglas Geller is 24-years-old and works in public relations. He is a graduate of Ithaca College and currently resides in New York, New York. He published his book: The Dreamer in 2016 and it is currently available on Amazon.

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Accepting a no because it only takes one yes:

No is a powerful word: it breaks hearts, crushes dreams and makes people cry. Often people will miss out on opportunities just because of the possibility that they’ll hear that two-letter word. Not only is it a powerful word but it is used commonly as well. Most people are told no quite often, no you can’t leave early because it’s nice outside, I’m sorry but no Jodie Foster isn’t available to do an interview with you. Luckily, it doesn’t matter how many times you’ve been said no to, because it only takes one time of someone saying yes, to change your life.

Hi, I’d like to talk to…That was me the majority of my junior and senior years in high school. I was constantly calling people who had no idea who I was, nor should they have, I was only the first ever host of a high school tv program and I was calling people way above my pay grade. Richard Kornberg, the publicist for Rent, knew there was nothing he could do for me, despite calling many, many times and explaining that a word from Jonathan Larson’s family on his time at White Plains High School would be a great segment! There were many of these calls, many with the same result. It was discouraging –  I had many “brilliant” ideas, I thought everyone would say yes, that I could convince anyone and everyone to come on my show that my parents and a few other people watched on local cable or online.

I think we can all see where this is leading to: someone did say yes, actually a few did. My first episode I had a Super Bowl winner do an interview. My mom helped me skip a day of school so I could interview Grammy award winning artist Matisyahu. A state senator joined me to discuss the high school’s budget. Those were some of the bigger yes’s that I received but for every one yes there were at least ten no’s. What is important is that I learned that it’s ok to be said no to, because if you are persistent and work hard enough, someone will say yes.

Today at twenty-four years old, I remember the lesson I learned in high school: Searching for jobs and facing rejection wasn’t easy, but I ended up with the job I wanted. I dated many girls before I found the most amazing one who said yes to me (still can’t figure out why though!)

As I continue a passion of mine, which is publicizing my book, I know many people will say no to reading it, supporting me and no to being featured on my blog. However, it makes me that more appreciative of the yeses. It’s a reminder of how hard I need to work and things that are worthwhile aren’t easy.

At the karate school that I’ve trained at for the majority of my life there is a phrase that is hung on the wall: Nana korobi ya oki. It means if you fall down seven times get up eight, because that eighth time is when you’ll win.

I decided to start a guest blog series in an effort to expose the diverse and beautiful people out there in the world. “Our Stories” is a guest blog series where I give writers a chance to share a unique story, experience, etc. that has made them into the person they are today. These unique stories can range from topics like sexuality or race to being a hospice nurse or growing up with a single mom- anything that has the power to shape a person’s life.

What experiences have you had that makes you who you are? If you are interested in participating in this guest blogger series, send me an email at brandibrendle@gmail.com so we can discuss. I am looking for multiple stories that  show how wonderfully contrast this world is. 

Tachira’s Story

Tachira on taking matters into your own hands to become successful:

My name is Tachira. I am a 35-year-old Barbadian. Today, I declare that I do not have my shit together.
About two months ago, I went to work as usual and was told about 9.30 am that would be my last day. The company closed down just like that. All I could think about while sipping my coffee was there goes my vacation. HA, plot twist. Well technically speaking I am on vacation.
This is my second time without a job. I was laid off around the same time three years ago. Talk about bad deja vu. Finally, I have decided to take my financial fate in my own hands. You can pour your heart into a job and they just discard you just like that. Life just throws you some curveballs sometimes, like my unexpected pregnancy about a year ago.
Becoming a mother totally changes your perspective on everything. I have never been the most patient or financially responsible person, to be honest. I have decided to become an entrepreneur. This, like motherhood, is an overwhelming undertaking. There is so much information to absorb and so many challenges to be faced.
So here I find myself an unemployed single mother. Buiding something lasting for my daughter is my only motivation; this is officially my period of learning and self-discovery.
My first little labour of love is my blog. Writing is so therapeutic to me. I try my best to spin everything in a positive light. So I have been taking classes and reading up online as much as I can about entrepreneurship. For days when I feel overwhelmed, there is yoga and meditation and the beach. Honestly, I have not felt this inspired and motivated in years.
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I decided to start a guest blog series in an effort to expose the diverse and beautiful people out there in the world. “Our Stories” is a guest blog series where I give writers a chance to share a unique story, experience, etc. that has made them into the person they are today. These unique stories can range from topics like sexuality or race to being a hospice nurse or growing up with a single mom- anything that has the power to shape a person’s life.

What experiences have you had that makes you who you are? If you are interested in participating in this guest blogger series, send me an email at brandibrendle@gmail.com so we can discuss. I am looking for multiple stories that  show how wonderfully contrast this world is.