Ask him for Christmas present: recite Andy Weir’s “The Egg.” Bonus points for memorization! Also great idea for audition tape. )I’m assuming you’ll be in theater!) xoxo


Summer Olympics for neighborhood kids. Create events in all kinds of sports, games and skills. Mix it up so the littler ones and the less athletically inclined have something they can succeed at too.


You don’t have to be friends with people you don’t like. But you can’t decide you don’t like someone unless you get to know them. (Rather than a look or a reputation or a difference, etc.)


You think you’re smart now but just wait. Your brain is just getting warmed up. Feed it: books, travel, music, mushrooms.

14, 17, 21

Ask “Is there anything you want to get off your chest?” Confession is good for the soul! Get in the habit of being a place of support when they screw up. Then when they’re older and REALLY screw up, they know they can trust you to help.


Colin Powell’s 13 rules: 1. It ain't as bad as you think. It will look better in the morning. 2. Get mad, then get over it. 3. Avoid having your ego so close to your position that when your position falls, your ego goes with it. 4. It can be done. 5. Be careful what you choose. You may get it. 6. Don't let adverse facts stand in the way of a good decision. 7. You can't make someone else's choices. You shouldn't let someone else make yours. 8. Check small things. 9. Share credit. 10. Remain calm. Be kind. 11. Have a vision. Be demanding. 12. Don't take counsel of your fears or naysayers. 13. Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier.

11, 14, 18

Be present. Don’t turn every conversation into a lesson. They stay in their rooms so much because they feel safe there. They’re tired and stressed out and managing a lot of change.


There is a cost and a duty to everything we own. Rachel Maddow


“Racism is real, even if you aren’t a racist. White privilege is real, even if you don’t feel it. Police brutality is real, even if the cop you know is kind. Your world isn’t the world. Everything is not about you.” -Mohamed Safa

16, 21

Get to know your body, push yourself in terms of strength and endurance. You're stronger than you think. You're growing stronger every day. Your body is amazing and healthy. Take care of it! Enjoy it! Use your amazing strength and energy to do good in the world.


Someone I admire is __________. Talk about someone you admire and why. Ask them to do the same. Do this often as you can. Reticket through age 18.


Check out from the library or Amazon: “My First Money Book: A Guide for Parents and Children to Saving, Spending, Sharing, and Investing Your Money” by Reggie Nelson


When choosing a partner I think it's less important that you both "believe" the same things and more important that you VALUE the same things and share the same priorities.


"You think your pain and your heartbreak are unprecedented in the history of the world, but then you read." ~ James Baldwin

14, 19

Look into a class for meditation for kids. I read an article on a Baltimore elementary school that replaced detention with meditation and had amazing success.


“When little people get overwhelmed by big feelings it’s our job to share our calm, not join their chaos.” L.R. Knost

1, 2, 3, 4, 10

When you see someone in military uniform, thank them for their service. Hold the door open for them, etc. If they are behind you in line at Starbucks, pay for their coffee. At the very least, look them in the eye and smile - they’ve made a tremendous sacrifice and you should acknowledge that.

12, 16, 21

A wise friend once told me that the kids will do as well as you do. You can’t be a good parent if you’re a miserable person. Do what you need to do to stay healthy and sane.

1, 5, 15, 21

Jon Stewart talking about Bruce Springsteen at Kennedy Center Honors: “I didn’t understand his music for a long time. I didn’t understand it until I learned what it is to yearn.” That’s why art hits you differently at different ages. You filter the art through the lens of your life experience.

15, 21

Yes, push yourself and see how far / fast / high you can go (physically, academically, etc.) But remember, you have nothing to prove to anyone except yourself.

14, 17, 21

Grandpa used to keep a hundred dollar bill stashed discreetly in his wallet “for emergencies.”


Remember Mom's birthday


You’re gonna be misunderstood a lot. Some people just won’t like you. It’s okay. Wish them well and let it go.

10, 13, 16, 21

Begin colon cancer screening at 40. We have a family history on both sides.


Numbing doesn’t work. Let it hurt, let it heal, then it lets itself go.


Focus on the lesson not the pain.

14, 21

A lesson from author Tom Zumba. I hope you’ll never need it: “There is nothing nothing easy about this thing called grief. Nothing. But I ask you to please please please say yes more often than you say no. Say yes to you. To possibility. To hope. To love. To life. To healing. Please choose the light more often than you choose the darkness. Not that there aren't gifts in the darkness. There are. But it's often so much easier to find them the gifts in the light. Do all you can to stay in the light. Please remember that the person you love so so so dearly lived. Don't forget that. He lived. She lived. Here with you. And your relationship continues. Always. Don't be so overwhelmed and paralyzed and pissed off that he died that she died that you spend most of your time focusing on their death. Focus on your life. Together. Say yes as often as you can. Choose light as often as you can. Remember that he lived as often as you can. Don't lose her in the details of her death. This thing called grief is hard hard hard work. But you are stronger than you think. His book is called Permission to Mourn


Whether it’s a kid at school or a politician on tv, beware of someone who tries to blame the world’s problems on a minority or some other group of people who are different. It’s a cheap tactic to get people riled up and afraid.


You're about to come into a ton of energy and strength. It will seem like a lot to manage at first, but you'll get used to it and learn to use it constructively. Push your limits (within reason.) Challenge yourself.


At the start of a day / project / interview / date / etc. Do this one simple thing: State your intention. How do you want to carry yourself? What is the goal for the outcome? Just take a moment to imagine how you want to behave, react, appear, etc. What impression do you want to leave with the people you interact with? Of those things that are in your control, what outcome would make you proud?

15, 20