8 Signs your marriage is unraveling

I’m sure we can agree that this post is not Instagram Story or Pinterest Pretty material. Can anything discussing a deteriorating relationship ever be? Nope. And I’m ok with that. If you are reading this, you might be wondering if your marriage or long-term relationship is on the rocks and trying to read the mile markers and in hindsight, ignored red flags that led you here. I’m not a licensed psychologist, but after my still recent divorce, here are my… Read more »

valentine cookies with essential oils

A few days after Christmas, I finally ventured back into the grocery store. I try to avoid places like Wegman’s, Target, and the likes during the holidays because I am not a big fan of crowds. Not necessarily because I don’t like people, but I just don’t have the patience to shop. Well, I was rather surprised to see Valentine’s Day candy before New Year’s had even arrived! Now that we have rung in the New Year and Valentine’s Day… Read more »

Gift guide for the francophile

As you may have guessed (or maybe not), I have been a francophile (love all things French) since I was a child. My best friend’s mom was French, so I naturally gravitated towards learning French as a second language in middle school. The rest is history (I’ll save it for another blog post, lol). ‘Tis the season for the gift guide, so I bring to you my suggestions for gifts for the francophile–beyond the usual Eiffel tower motif! Je vous… Read more »

Joyful Self-Care Guide How to Conquer Darker Days

Are you a cooler temps, pumpkin spice kinda gal, or do you prefer sipping cool drinks by the pool or beach in the heat of summer? Personally, I wish I could have the best of both worlds–sunshine AND crisper, longer days. Alas, ’tis the season to ‘fall’ into autumn in Happy Valley (central Pennsylvania) and with that come shorter, darker days. How can you conquer the sluggishness you may feel this time of year? My solution is to listen my… Read more »

Spooky Gluten-Free Halloween Treats You Can't Resist

Does the thought of going gluten-free for Halloween spook you? I recently jumped back on the gluten-free wagon as part of a holistic approach to taming my Hashimoto’s and healing my gut. With Halloween just around the corner, a certain level of fright crept up on me. Our department always hosts a Halloween potluck party nicknamed ‘Spooky Boucke.’ Desperate for some creative gluten-free Halloween treats, I posed a question to the universe, umm, kindred spirit bloggers, and was overwhelmed by… Read more »

From Anxious and Frustrated to Joyful and Empowered

I’ve been busy digesting the past few weeks. I sent my firstborne off into the world of college. Of course, it didn’t quite go as planned. I was expecting a normal ‘meet the roommates’ and their parents and then take my son out for lunch or go on one last Target run, but nooooo! I showed up anxious and frustrated, thanks to car troubles. About 15 minutes before arriving at our destination (Erie, PA), my trusty red 2007 Saturn Vue… Read more »

The Simple Trick to Showing Grace to a Difficult Coworker

Pssst. Yes, dear friend, this post on showing grace is meant for you! Is your 9-5 existence punctuated by frequent sanity checks, uh, checking your 401(k) balance to temporarily sooth your anxieties in a high stress workplace? Feeling frustrated, annoyed, and irritated? Tired of dealing with difficult people in a dysfunctional work environment? I can relate. Been there, survived that. The corporate, nonprofit, government (domestic and foreign), and academic worlds have their fair share of aggravations. When the aggravation is… Read more »

Last year, I decided to do a pre-emptive purge, or an early spring cleaning, to streamline the clutter in my life. Pouring over about a decade’s worth of random documents, pictures, and other belongings, I discovered a red journal where I had had every good intention of recording what would prove to be a memorable vacation in Australia. The journal continues just one short entry: Sydney Dec. 25th 2004 Xmas Left Japan 12/23 – had a long stopover in Taipei,… Read more »

The Best Inspirational Summer Reads

My childhood memories of summer revolve around beaches and summer reading. Having grown up in ‘the Hamptons,’ (Southampton, to be precise), I spent most of my childhood sitting on the beach. Reveling in the luxurious sounds of waves crashing against the shore and seagulls singing, I would lie down on my towel not to sunbathe, but to settle in and read a good book. Back then we didn’t have Amazon.com. No, my mom would take us to Rodger’s Memorial Library… Read more »

Apologies and Power Dynamics: What you need to know

I’m sorry. So sorry. My apologies. Mea culpa. Such short phrases that should just roll off of your tongue, right? But what if you are expected to apologize when you strongly believe you did nothing wrong? Expected to apologize when the person you are told to apologize to is at ‘fault,’ from your perspective? Last week, a colleague endured a tirade from an ‘internal customer.’ It lasted close to an hour. I kept my distance because 1) I didn’t want… Read more »