Trees of Truth

I’m not ready
for Monday morning.


I feel

These are feelings that I rail against.

I want to be strong.

In these moments, I hate me for my weakness.

And rail harder against the fragility.
And wish to, instead to
Be daring.

Fearing that I will shatter into a million
achieving wholeness.

But maybe the answer is in breaking.
Disconnect in order to truly connect
to the greater me.

Stand naked

My soul knows
The answers
are there
within the fear
To continue to fight against
the human condition
of vulnerability
is simply denying
the trees of truth

For a Snowy Winter Evening:

Love from Robert Frost

From the moment I learned that words created the beloved stories I had listened to, I was fascinated with the concept of then putting them Underwood Typewritertogether to create my own stories.  My 1st grade self especially loved the “story-writing” paper: a big space for a picture with lines my stories. (Remember those?)  When I was in the fifth grade, I discovered with poetry.  I learned that words didn’t need to create complete sentences to convey meaning nor were paragraphs needed when it came to telling a story.

In high school, I fell in love.  I was introduced to the full works of Robert Frost and found such beauty in his work.

Over time, I veered away from poetry and once again devoured books that pulled me away from reality (mysteries, suspense, romance) along with those that thrust me into the minds of great thinkers (Covey, Brown, Allan).

This past year, I’ve delved back into poetry again.  Rumi is the main poet I’m reading these days…. but all of the snow this week in Ohio has brought me back to those memories as well as the first poet I devoured and truly fell in love with: Robert Frost.

As there is a small copse of trees near the house and one of the most magical things I’ve watched this week is the way snow settles upon the bare branches of the maple trees and snuggled into the needles of the fir.   I had to share this poem with you….

Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening

by Robert Frost


Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

Oh, how we’d love to explore those things that are lovely, dark and deep!  And, of course, one of my all-time favorite final lines…. “and miles to go before I sleep.”

May you have the sleep of the angels on this winter’s night.


on this Veteran’s Day

“On this Veterans Day, let us remember the service of our veterans, and let us renew our national promise to fulfill our sacred obligations to our veterans and their families who have sacrificed so much so that we can live free.”
- Dan Lipinski

“America’s veterans have served their country with the belief that democracy and freedom are ideals to be upheld around the world.”
- John Doolittle

“Valor is stability, not of legs and arms, but of courage and the soul.”
- Michel de Montaigne


“This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave.” -Elmer Davis

“We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude.” -Cynthia Ozick


“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” – John F. Kennedy

All photos take by Debra Smouse in and around Washington DC

From top to bottom:  Vietnam Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery, The Lone Sailor (US Navy Memorial), US Navy Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery, Korean War Memorial, Vietnam Nurses Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery

Words of Wisdom from Anita Roddick

Darling, it’s time to discover the hammer that you need to SMASH that rear view way of living.

Question of the Day

Wisdom from Mr. Rogers

On Forgiveness

We can all use a little more forgiveness in our lives….

Sophia Loren Wisdom (Part Three)

Sophia Loren on living, happiness, crying, and aging

My final tribute to Sophia Loren’s 78th Birthday.




Want more Sophia Loren Wisdom? Part One | Part Two

Sophia Loren Wisdom (Part Two)

Sophia Loren on Sex Appeal & Beauty



Want more Sophia Loren Wisdom?  Check out Part One.

Sophia Loren Wisdom (Part One)

Sophia Loren on Living Life to the Fullest

In honor of Sophia Loren’s 78th Birthday, I thought I’d share a little of her wisdom.  I found so many wonderful quotes that I needed more than one post!





Tune in later today for more Sophia Loren Wisdom. What are your favorite of these?

Never Forget.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. I’m sure the writer in me may not agree as I can be quite verbose when my fingers get to moving. Today, however, many of those words are private and I prefer to share brief words and more photos.

9/11 shattered lives. Some people lost their faith in God. Others discovered that they wanted more out of their life than simple existing. And some discovered faith and strengths they didn’t recall they had.

Washington DC was a second home to me for many years. Though I had a house in Texas, DC was my heart’s home. For a long stretch in 2008, I slept better in hotel beds than I did in my bed at home.

But I digress just slightly. Only to share part of the reason my 9/11 Memorial Photos lean heavy to the DC side.

The first group of photos are of the 9/11 Pentagon Memorial.  They were all taken in September 2008 the weekend it was dedicated.  The photo of Arlington National Cemetery was taken in November 2007. Arlington National Cemetery is just on the other side of the Pentagon and where many of the victims of the Pentagon were buried. It’s here for my own reminder. The photos of the 9/11 Memorial in New York City were taken on my 5th or 6th trip into the city after that day…they are from November 2011.

Never Forget.