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Keep traveling

“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page,” advises a notecard from Fly Paper Products. I found that notecard recently while on a trip to Maine. –Joy

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Take the first step

“Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the full staircase,” Martin Luther King Junior once said.

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The sun shines in us

It’s easy to dwell on the negatives things that are happening when you read the newspaper every morning, listen to the news on NPR during the day and commiserate with family and friends at dinner. But, always, there are good things happening—even in the worst of times. I am trying to dwell on those things, […]

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Speak up for things that matter

I walked Saturday with my friend Susie and 40,000 other people in the Women’s March in Austin. We were standing up, speaking up for issues that matter to us. “Our lives begin to end when we’re silent about things that matter,” Martin Luther King once said. –Joy

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People who are strong

“People who are truly strong lift others up. People who are truly powerful bring others together,” Michelle Obama once said. –Joy

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The asparagus test

Kelly Dittmar, a professor at the Rutgers Center for American Women and Politics, had a friend who needed someone to fill a spot on “some sort of asparagus advisory board.” When the friend asked a few men and a few women to join the board, the women said, “I don’t know that much about asparagus.” […]

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Do you think immediately, “Thank goodness, it’s Friday.”? That’s what I used to think. No more. Not since I saw a plaque in a store in Georgetown with “T.G.I.F.” in big letters and then underneath in smaller type: “Thank goodness, I’m female.” –Joy

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Are you normal?

I don’t think I’ve ever been normal, but, more and more, I accept that it’s okay. In fact, Maya Angelou once said, “If you are always trying to be normal, you will never know how amazing you can be.” I found this quote in Maya Angelou’s book Rainbow in the Cloud—The Wisdom and Spirit of […]

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Clothes are armor

Miranda, who is 27 and divorced, is taking classes and looking for a job. She spends money on expensive clothes because she has “come to understand that clothes are armor,” writes Emily St. John Mandel in her book Station Eleven. And how are clothes used as armor? I asked myself that question when I read […]

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A smart cookie

“’I could’ve been somebody, you know?’ my mother says,” Sandra Cisneros writes about Esperanza’s mother in her book The House on Mango Street, the story of a young girl growing up in the Latino section of Chicago. The mother “has lived in this city her whole life. She can speak two languages. She can sing […]

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