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There are things that I want my children to know, but especially my daughter…things that I was lucky enough to be taught by my mother, or had to learn the hard way–always valuable teacher, but generally better if you can avoid in the first place.

1.  Life happens.  Enjoy it, because eventually it runs out…

2.  There is an exception to every rule, except rule #1–but before you become the exception, be certain that you won’t be punished by the rule.

3.  People can take your money and they can ruin your reputation…but they can never take what you know—so make it a point to learn all you can, every day…

3.  Never go to bed angry at the ones you love–no matter how long it takes to talk it out, do it…because you never want the last thing you tell someone important to you to be something cruel.

4.  Plan for the future, and in your plans hope for the best–but prepare for the worst………but don’t forget to set aside the plans and be spontaneous

5.  Love…love often; love even if they don’t love you back, never be ashamed to love; love without reservation, but with pride; love and never look back if you have to leave anyhow; love and expect to be loved, you are worth loving; love long; and when you find someone that loves you as you love them, love them more…

6.  Know when to leave…know when to leave a lover, know when to leave a job, know when to leave a friendship…and know how to do it with dignity (and a bit of style, if needed)

7.  Read…outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend (and inside of a dog, its too dark to read)

8.  Respect nature, remember that you are a part of it–not apart from it…and remember that you are an expression of its forces at work, so respect yourself as well

9.  Make due with what you have, until you get what you want…

10.  If you are considering getting in a fight, make sure it is one you are willing to lose.  Anyone can go into a fight expecting to win–and half of them still come out losers…instead, ask youself “is this worth getting the s*** beat out of me?”–if it is, go for it…if not, its not important enough to fight about.

11.  You are the only person that can determine your actions/reactions, thoughts and feelings.  You are responsible for your own happiness, your own well being, your own position in life.  Stop whining about what you don’t like, don’t have, etc and DO something about it.  No one else is responsible for you, but you.