November 12, 2008

Well Said

Since the election results, I have heard and read a lot of comments that are full of hate (I have also heard a lot of comments about joy and hope). Several of these hateful comments stem from the contriversary about gay marriage. With all of the messages we hear nowadays going back and forth, Keith Olbermann gives a passionate statement about Love. Please watch at the link below:

November 5, 2008

What a Wonderful Day!

After a year's hiatus, The Sunshine Journal is back. And in a way it's fitting that the first post after a long break would come the day after a historic election. Whether you are an Obama or a McCain supporter, last night was the start of transformation and progress.

Yes, there was record-breaking voter attendance. Yes, people involved in the Civil Rights movement witnessed a day they didn't think they'd see in their lifetime. And yes, there were controversial (and close) propositions on the ballots. Last night was the beginning of a fresh start. Personally, I was excited about some results (Obama becoming President Elect) and not so much about others (Prop. 8 passing and banning same-sex marriage). But perhaps what I'm most excited about is what's still to come; last night, as Obama said, "The people won" and thousands participated for the first time in a positive democratic process. Let's keep the momentum going!

I'm from the "younger" generation. A generation that is usually accused of not being politically active; however, last night was a different story. After years of hearing comments like, "Politicians don't listen to us." Followed by rebuttals of, "Politicians don't listen because you aren't active." I am excited that, after last night, those walls are now falling down and I can't help but grin from ear to ear at how important this shift will be for the future. BUT (and yes, that's an all caps BUT), the momentum can't end today because the results are in, instead we all have to keep moving forward and we all still have a lot of work ahead of us that we are all directly or indirectly a part of.

In an almost symbolic way, I woke up this morning and looked out the window to a new world transformed by snow; a metaphoric fresh new start. This morning I woke up to a new day, new possibilities, hopes, transitions, progress; I woke up to a wonderful new day!

July 18, 2007

Shine For Others

Want to bring a little bit of Sunshine to someone else's life? Want to get creative while doing so?

As many of you already know, I work for a non-profit in Utah called SPLORE. SPLORE is an organization that I truly adore and I believe in their mission statement of providing life-enhancing experiences to people with disabilities through outdoor recreation.

Every fall, SPLORE holds a benefit auction to raise funds to provide life-changing outdoor recreation experiences to people with disabilities and special needs. At the auction we sell artwork, crafts and other made-from-the-heart goods. One of the activities at the auction is called "Dart for Art" and it's when guests have paid extra for a ticket with a different sporting event listed on the back. The ballroom where we have our auction is lined with beautiful works of art...made by you! Throughout the evening, we will announce what sporting event is supposed to "dart" for their favorite piece of artwork that is on the walls.

Dart for Art is a fun event that raises a lot of funds for SPLORE and our participants. If you'd like to donate some art to the SPLORE Auction, please contact me at: It's a great way to shine for others and it's also a great tax write-off!

June 2, 2007


I watched the sun set tonight. I took my baby in my arms and held him close as the sun cast a pink glow onto the slowly moving clouds. I kissed his pink cheeks and told him to say goodnight to the sun. The warm rays kissed his blonde hair and I breathed easier to know that I am still connected to this earth and its wonders. Amidst the rushing and consuming and worry I can still take a moment to behold the wonder of the sun and the beauty it gives us. I can still connect with my baby and show him the marvelous gifts nature gives us. Its moments like this when I really feel alive.

May 31, 2007

What's your inspiration?

I'm a Nature lover. It so greatly inspires me. I often find myself wondering, "Is there anyone not awed by the power and beauty of nature?" I'm serious about this question; I know nature inspires me, but does it inspire everyone? It takes a whole menagerie of folks to make the world go round, so what's are you inspired by? I want to know.

A few weeks ago I was camping in the deserts of Southern Utah. I woke-up at 5:30 in the morning, took a glossy-eyed look around me and saw one of the most beautiful sunrises in my life. The cliffs and buttes of the desert canyons were a rich black color with their tops aflame by oranges and yellows of the rising sun. The rest of the sky faded from a very pale green, to light blue to dark blue with nothing else in the sky except a brightly shining crescent moon and a few lone stars. I love sunrises, what a beautiful way to start the day...with a beautiful gift from Mother Nature! The sunrise inspired me to paint a picture from the morning and the results are below.

Last weekend, I had some time to retreat to the mountains and enjoy a hike of beauty and solitude. I hiked to a wonderful place called Donut Falls. I sat along the shores of the waterfall and enjoyed the scenery around me and dazed off into the bubbling water to let all of the other "noise" in my head be washed away with the sound of the waterfalls. On the hike back, I saw a moose grazing in some marshy lowlands and another near-by creek. I was so excited to see the moose, I think it's the first moose that I've seen in Utah!

Yeah, there's no question about it, I'm inspired by nature; but I'm also inspired by good music, volunteers, and 1000s of other tiny little moments that enrich this wonderful journey that we call life.
So, I ask again, what inspires you?

May 24, 2007

Hugged a Volunteer Lately?

Some of the most amazing, generous, loving, passionate and fun people in the world. I'm proud to be a volunteer and even more happy to work with other volunteers.

This past weekend, my job (SPLORE), held a rafting trip for volunteers to get trained on our rafting programs and how to help people with disabilities enjoy outdoor recreation opportunities. People from all walks of life, abilities, ages and motivations came to learn how to be a volunteer. To give of themselves to help others and I could not be more impressed with the quality of folks that I met.

Erma Brombeck has an excellent quote about volunteers:
"Volunteers are the only human being on the face of the earth who reflect this nation's compassion, unselfish caring, patience and just plain loving one another."

I want to challenge you.
I challenge you to put some time aside to volunteer. Some time to help someone or something else out. In a world where we are told to constantly, "go, go, go, go, go," take a moment to step back, look what you're grateful for and share your gratitude, talents, passion, abilities, GIFTS. Gifts come in all sorts of shapes, sizes and purposes. In a world where we worry that there isn't enough money or "time" for this or that, the best gift you could give is your time. Trust me, you'll get more gifts back in return than you could ever give out and it's never a waste of time...I call it an enrichment of time.

So, get out, volunteer, make a difference in the world and your own life. There are plenty of places that could use your help, so there is no shortage on volunteer opportunities. Most of the time volunteering is free, so money isn't an issue. Time is relative; one hour of volunteering a month can make a lifetime of a difference.

Tell us how the experience went. Share your favorite volunteer memories. You might be suprised by how touched you will be.

Or, take a moment to Go Hug a Volunteer! they are a precious resource. (And we like least I do!)

May 2, 2007


So, some of you that know me know that I work at an amazing organization called SPLORE. SPLORE is a non-profit that provides outdoor recreation to folks with disabilities. The Story below is from a local news station doing a story on us. This is just a tiny example of what we do. We've been around for 30 years this summer and there are several other stories that can be told, but I wanted to show an example to all of you. My job rocks and I'm soooo happy that the news finally put a positive story out to the public instead of all of the negative "stuff" we hear all the time!

The direct link to the story is:

(Watch the video!)