Anything is Possible!

With Faith, Hope and Perseverance


Extending Compassion To All Living Things

I found this one-liner at Healing Soul Streams,  where blessings flow in abundance.

Extend our Circle of compassion Albert Schweitzer

Let us extend our compassion to all living things, including ourselves.

One-Liner Wednesday is extended to us by Linda G. Hill at


The One-Liner Wednesday rules (which I sometimes follow) are:

1. Make it one sentence.

2. Try to make it either funny or inspirational.

3. Use our unique tag #1linerWeds.

4. Add our very cool badge to your post for extra exposure!

5. Have fun!


East of the Sun, and West of the Moon

Loving the message of hope in this universal truth of balance uncovered by Trini Lind at “The Paths of the Spirit.”

The Paths of the Spirit

The old Norse people believed there was a fine balance between chaos and harmony, and that sometimes chaos had to erupt in order to bring about change and reclaim a new harmony. In such chaotic times, the “Jotne” (the giants) and the gods would fight, some gods would expire, but new heroes would arise, and those heroes would bring about the new harmony. The ultimate chaos was called “Ragnarok”. This was the time when the snake that kept the world in place would die, and all borders would fall.

I think we all go through such battles in our lives, be it an interior battle within ourselves, where chaos threatens to bring down our old beliefs and habits, or an exterior battle; chaos and unrest in the world, when humanity itself is plunged into chaos, and have to find new ways of life to cope with the disrupting changes, and…

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A Quick Update: JoAnna of the Forest is Back!


Lantern hill trail (2)

I’ve been wanting some anonymity on my blog, so I’m returning to my blogging roots as joannaoftheforest. One reason for the change is that I’ve decided to publish my memoir under my maiden name to protect the privacy of several individuals. It might make marketing a little more complicated in other places, but it will give me more peace of mind. For updates on the book, you  can sign up for my monthly newsletter and/or like my Facebook author page via the side bar to the right.

I appreciate the loving support of my blogging family, and as joannaoftheforest, I’ll be able to let you know when my book comes out.


Awesome Stories 311

More awesome stories from Brad at “Writing to Freedom.” Check out the videos! The second one, about Aaron, made me cheer. 🙂

writing to freedom

This week Awesome Stories brings you human books, children at play, love at work, and special athletes.

Children at Playplay therapy, Awesome Stories

This article really resonates with me. I’ve often wondered whether kids are being pushed too hard to excel at school, grades, and sports. According to Luis Fernando Llosa, children are being robbed of their childhoods. His article explores the growing body of evidence showing that the early push to excel is creating kids who don’t know how to relax, connect socially, or make creative choices. All they know how to do is what they’re told by parents, teachers, and coaches. Plus, watching the lifestyles of friends and family members, I feel a great sadness that we don’t seem to allow kids to simply be or play. Most of their time is structured with either achievement-oriented activity or TV, video games, and phones.

The Human Library

I love this project that…

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A Man Who Can Listen AND be Manly


Today’s Steam of Consciousness prompt, brought to us by Linda G. Hill, is “man.”

Aside from the fact that I have trouble with using the word, “man,” to mean all humans, just as a matter of principle, I still imagined myself with a man as a partner. I love the company of women, because it’s usually easy for women to understand each other, as long as we are mature enough to avoid the petty drama of adolescence that some people never grow out of. But when I imagined my dog-loving soulmate, I imagined a man. It’s too bad that I still imagine a man sometimes when I think of God, and I wonder if I’ve been brainwashed, or a better word would be influenced, to imagine God as male based on the language in the Bible and mainstream Christianity. But I really didn’t mean to go there. It’s the Stream of Consciousness that led me there. Let me just swim back up river and pick up another part of the stream, because I wanted to tell you about a song I made up when I was looking for, hoping for, my soulmate. I didn’t make up the tune, and I bet you can recognize the tune by the words.

But first, some background: As you may know, I’ve always been a big Star Trek fan with Mr. Spock being my first crush. Later in life, when single again, I developed a crush on Chakotay, the first officer on Voyager.

Anyway, here’s a stanza of the song I made up:

Oh Lord, won’t ya find me, a man who can listen.

Someone like Chakotay, who’s not been to prison.

I’ve tried on my own Lord, and I have been missin’

Oh Lord, won’t ya find me, a man who can listen.

Chakotay was a man who could listen to a woman, because Janeway was the captain. But he could also give orders and be, well, manly. He didn’t give orders to Janeway though, he was protective of her and a good first officer.

It turns out that the Lord did bring me a man who could listen and be manly too. And protective in a non-dominant way. That’s what a real man is anyway, right?

For a chance to win a free, signed copy of When God Says Wait, sign up for my monthly newsletter before March 21st by clicking the box on the side bar on the right, or just click here:

Here are the Rules for Stream of Consciousness Saturday:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing, (typos can be fixed) and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. There will be a prompt every week. I will post the prompt here on my blog on Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The’,” or simply a single word to get your started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours.  Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read everyone’s! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later, or go to the previous week, by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find right below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!


Love Letters From My Father

Dad with Baby mk and me (2)

 That’s me on the right, just in case you couldn’t tell.

After my father died, I found letters he’d written to me over the years and saved, like a journal, hidden in the old cabinet he used as an end table next to his recliner. I’m still processing the content of these letters. One of them is about why he didn’t come to my rescue when I wanted to come home from the college in the mountains.

This excerpt from my work in progress explains:

On my second day in Boone, before classes started, my roommate and I went to a pub not far from campus. I recognized Chris, a super brainy girl from my high school who’d already been at the college for a year. She waved to me and invited us to sit with her. My roommate saw some people she knew and went to sit with them. Chris made me feel welcome, and I started to feel comfortable with her. Maybe the beer helped. She asked me how I was doing.

“Well, I’m a little nervous,” I admitted.

“That’s normal. It’ll get better.”

“And I miss my boyfriend. I’m actually thinking of going back home.”

Chris looked thoughtful. “You know, you’ve got your whole life to go to college,” she said. “If you want to go home, it’s okay. It’s your decision.”

I was surprised by her response. I’d expected her to encourage me to stay. If this brainiac said it was okay to go home, then who was I to fight it any longer?

I called my parents and said I wanted to come home. Having just driven seven hours each way to bring me there a couple of days earlier, Dad refused to come get me. He didn’t say much, leading me to guess he was disgusted or at least disappointed.

Being stubborn, I managed to find another way home, but that’s another part of the story.

Fast forward to 43 years later when I read my Dad’s secret letters last week. One his letters revealed that the reason they didn’t come get me was because their old station wagon had a blow out on their trip home and left him “without a spare.” He wrote in Jan 2011: “Money was very short and, we had very little in the bank, and almost nothing on hand. I would have to have gotten permission from work…We also thought about what you were giving up….I have to admit my love for you was and still is a factor. After we made our decision not to come up, we went to bed, but I don’t think either one of us slept that night. The decision bothered us for years and we talked about it for even more years, even after you were married….I still felt guilty.”

I had no idea that money was a problem back then! I figured it was all about not wanting to bail me out when I should have stayed. I thought it was just because he was mad at me. I’ve carried that shame for years. And all this time, HE felt guilty for not coming to get me. I knew my parents loved me, but I didn’t know how much until I read these letters full of love.

Ive always wanted my father to be proud of me, even when I resented him. Even when I didn’t like his conservative beliefs. Even when I avoided him. I still, deep down, wanted him to be proud of me.

And what I’m finding out from his secret love letters is that he was.

love letters from dad (2)

Some things are worth waiting for. For a chance to win a free, signed copy of When God Says Wait, sign up for my monthly newsletter before March 21st by clicking the box on the side bar to the right, or just click here:


Time in a Bottle

Song Lyric Sunday

Jim Croce was one of my favorite singer/songwriters in the seventies, and time is one of my favorite topics. It’s fitting that my first Song lyric Sunday post is about saving time as I sit here on my bed, covered in blankets, listening to the rain melt the snow that rarely falls here.

Let’s make the most of the time we have.

“Time In A Bottle”   By Jim Croce

If I could save time in a bottle
The first thing that I’d like to do
Is to save every day till eternity passes away
Just to spend them with youIf I could make days last forever
If words could make wishes come true
I’d save every day like a treasure and then
Again, I would spend them with you

But there never seems to be enough time
To do the things you want to do, once you find them
I’ve looked around enough to know
That you’re the one I want to go through time with

If I had a box just for wishes
And dreams that had never come true
The box would be empty, except for the memory of how
They were answered by you

But there never seems to be enough time
To do the things you want to do, once you find them
I’ve looked around enough to know
That you’re the one I want to go through time with.

I’m not sure why the video isn’t showing up, but here’s the link to the song:
For more information on Song Lyric Sunday, visit: