You never ever have to convince someone to do the work to be ready…

“Someone can be madly in love with you and still not be ready. They can love you in a way you have never been loved and still not join you on the bridge. And whatever their reasons you must leave. Because you never ever have to inspire anyone to meet you on the bridge. You never ever have to convince someone to do the work to be ready. There is more extraordinary love, more love that you have never seen, out here in this wide and wild universe. And there is the love that will be ready.”

~ Lillian Vilchez, Married at First Sight Star on her and Tom Wilson’s divorce, May 31, 2017

Ditch The List

I am notorious for making lists. To-do lists, wish lists, lists of gaps in my wardrobe or decor, client deadline lists, etc. I am to a fault highly organized and punctual.

I also have a repution for living my life with a can-do spirit and abundant optimism. So much so Lori’s “la la land” was where people thought I lived 30+ years before it became a popular musical.

This week a pastor and author friend sent me this kind message: “I was thinking about you yesterday. It’s amazing to me how you have gone through so many trials and tribulations and still come through them on top, optimistic, energetic, beautiful, and looking to the future. Love being around you – which hasn’t happened enough lately!  … Could use a Lori fix.”

His note immediately lifted my spirits, but more than that it caused me to pause and think about how I navigate the world with such resilience, joy, and dare I say grace?!

After all, I am asked this very question (How do you navigate the world with…) quite often as if I know a secret or have discovered an elusive formula.

I have lots of answers: Forgive early and often, follow your bliss, make yourself happy first, only give from your overflow, be grateful, enjoy the present, grieve as long as it takes… the list goes on.

Throw out your list!

A longer list doesn’t make you more productive. In fact, you may find if you ignore your sacred to-do list for two weeks or a month, many of the items are no longer important.

I actually discovered this while living in Mexico for six months last year as when I returned home to six months of mail, I realized only about 5% of it required my attention.

Do you have a list of things you’ve promised to do for other people? Is it so big it causes you anxiety? Are you on this list anywhere?

I am not giving you permission to not keep your word. I believe strongly your word is your bond. I am not ignoring that we all have obligations, which very often are quite challenging. What I am saying is … asking rather, “Why are you signing up for things that you are not passionate about?” Guess what? Other people are likely passionate about some of the very tasks you are slogging through. Stop filling the space and feeling resentful. Get out of their way, for God’s sake.

As a very competent and capable person I know firsthand it is easy to fall into the trap of volunteering for everything. Stop it.

Whenever you say yes to something you are saying no to something else. Too often it is you (or your family), or a longer-term dream.

Do I still make lists? Of course, I do! But more often than not –  unless it is a shopping list – I write it down and never look back.

These days I am too (hmmm, busy is certainly not the right word, though some who do not know me well think I am always busy) enthralled with speaking dreams into the Universe and watching with awe how the Universe conspires to help me achieve it.

I have found that putting me first is the best way for me to be my best self and better to and for others.

Write that down.

~Just L (September 20, 2018, Goddess Wisdom)


I do

I want fireworks
I don’t want what is expected
I want to laugh uncontrollably
At inside jokes
I don’t want to fear the fire
But become it
I want to be held close
And throw caution to the wind
I don’t care who sees
I want to run wild
Scream at the top of my lungs
From the bottom of my heart
I do.

~Just L (May 7, 2017)

Awash in Mystery — A Dream

McMenamins Spar Cafe Private Booth

I am recording my dreams n 2017. I rarely dream of a particular person. There is one particular person I dream of often. I thought I’d share this one…

We were at a house party with a live band. The house was a very spacious, well-appointed multi-level mid-century modern that was nothing short of elegant. I didn’t recognize any of the people at the party but apparently, in my dream, I knew them well.

I was sitting at the bar in the kitchen, drinking cranberry juice, and chatting with the hosts. He approached me. He was baked! Without much introduction he asked me, “You want to get out of here? I want to show you something.” (Everything was as is it is now between us. In other words, we are not together and do not speak) I simply replied, “Sure.” He grabbed my hand (…you know even in my dream I was acutely aware how much I love that simple gesture between us) and followed him out.

I don’t recall how we got there, but we walked up to what looked like a concrete block warehouse with a tall chain link fence, and muddy parking area.

One step inside, and the exterior was clearly a facade. We were required to take off our muddy shoes (I was wearing pink Teva sandals) before entering. He grabbed my hand and led me into what can only be described as a cross between a swanky speakeasy, a high end opium den, and an old world library.

There was something glorious, contagious, and ruinous about it that thrilled us both.

It was dark, exotic and rich, with views of the stormy ocean through small windows at each booth or station. Each station was semi-private, came with it’s own server, had a slightly different decor. He chose a sumptuous S-shaped chaise lounge for two with attached cocktail trays and a corner window.

From our corner I could view four gentlemen in a booth (Have you ever seen the private booth at McMenamins Spar Cafe in Olympia, WA? That.) making a transaction illicit drugs out on the table), and a passionate googly-eyed couple sharing cocktails at small antique table that was reminiscent of my favorite restaurant, Cibreo, in Florence, Italy.

I’ll skip the dialogue and what happened next sweetly to myself.

After awhile our female server said, “Mr. _____, it’s time.” It was so charming, I felt as if I had been transported to another time and place, I didn’t want to move. He gave me a look that told me we must. As if on cue everyone quietly exited. I didn’t understand at the time. No money was ever exchanged, the lights went out, and like stage hands people quietly put things away.

When we got outside I realized I had one of my shoes and another person’s shoe, and turned to correct the mistake. Arriving at the back door I was told I could not enter. I ran around where we had originally entered, but by then the concrete shell was flooded with ocean water. It was then I realized what he had not told me about this secret place. It was only known to a few, it operated more like a membership club than a bar, it was open only after dark, and each night it was buried by the sea. In part, to remain hidden from law enforcement.

I could see my shoe stuck in the mud so I held my breath and dove to grab it. I came running out wet and laughing.

He waited for me nervously as I am certain I broke every rule.

We ran across the street and up steep stairs cut into the hillside into a neighborhood (one I have dreamed about before).


~Just L AKA Lori Bumgardner (Dream, January 8, 2017)