We amplify our joy when we share it with others.


Me, running to the water, Stinson Beach, CA

Me/Andrea in the water at Stinson Beach, photo by John Nieto

Me/Andrea in the water at Stinson Beach, photo by John Nieto


Me jumping at Stinson Beach, photo by John Nieto

I’ve been craving the ocean for days, feeling melancholy and drained. For me, the best and only antidote is the ocean. I’m a California girl through and through, born in Los Angeles and grew up in Santa Cruz. The ocean is in my bones and has been my constant companion (and healer) for as long as I can remember. There is nothing on earth that rearranges me like walking for hours in the sand, feeling the water lap at my feet.

Yesterday, when I saw the forecast was 80 degrees, it occurred to me that I work for myself! And that I could make the hour drive to the beach just like that. No need to ask permission. (I sometimes forget this) I collected my dear, old friend John and off we went.

Rock I found at the beach with a face

Rock we found at the beach with a face

We walked barefoot and took photos. We combed the beach for seaglass and beautiful rocks. We found one with a remarkable face! and John told me about a time when he was at Ocean Beach and found dozens of baby sand dollars, all perfect and unbroken, strewn all over the sand. The image enchanted me and I silently wished for tiny sand dollars to appear. Within minutes, I found the tiniest sand dollar imaginable. It was the size of my fingernail! Then I found another and another… they were everywhere.

As we walked back, I did a ritual. I wrote the names of all the people in my life who need healing right now. (There are a lot of them) I sent each of them blessings and asked the ocean to help…

Baby sand dollar

Baby sand dollar

Amplifying our joy

We can amplify our positive emotions by sharing them – our gratitude, our joy and our well-being. My joy was amplified by sharing it with John yesterday. My gratitude + well-being were amplified by the simple ritual of sending love + healing prayers out to friends. We can amplify our appreciation by having a gratitude buddy and sharing lists each day.

This morning, when I told one of the other moms at the bus stop that I played hooky and went to Stinson beach, her eyes got big. “That is so inspiring!” she beamed. As I shared more about our day, she got more and more excited. “Thank you for sharing that,” she told me. “You are encouraging me to do this for myself this week!” I walked away smiling, my own joy amplified…

And so I share this with you as well. A reminder to do something healing for yourself, something that makes you come alive this weekend. Share it and watch it ripple out to everyone you touch.


The amazing John Nieto, Stinson Beach, CA


John Nieto jumping, Stinson Beach



  1. Posted April 19, 2013 at 5:32 pm | Permalink

    You have inspired me for sure! it’s just plain time to go to the beach, dammit! Sorry, sometimes I have to add a little “dammit” to give me a push. ?

  2. Posted April 19, 2013 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    Awesome photos!

  3. Posted April 19, 2013 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

    In my family, we call those “sand dimes” ?

  4. Madelyn
    Posted April 19, 2013 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    I’m pretty obsessive about collecting rocks whenever I’m at the Beach, and I especially adore sea glass! I always feel like I’m stumbling on a diamond when I find some.

    So, I just wanted to share this with you:


    it’s a WHOLE beach made of Sea glass. Isn’t that awesome?

  5. Renee
    Posted April 19, 2013 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for the reminder, Andrea. As always – you are a STAR!

  6. Posted April 19, 2013 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for this reminder, Andrea. I totally needed it! I sit here at my office and home trying to stay focused completely forgetting that I can take the day off and do something delicious. Here’s to wonderful self-care!

  7. Posted April 19, 2013 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    My teenage hangout was Stinson Beach…nostalgia!

  8. Posted April 20, 2013 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    What fun… life is for living!

  9. Nancy Guillery
    Posted April 20, 2013 at 11:23 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for sharing!! Giving ourselves time doesn’t have to be a huge undertaking, just a few minutes each day will do wonders for the soul.

  10. catherine
    Posted April 21, 2013 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    Loving the jump shots… how very awesome. And extra awesome: the small turned into huge moments of freedom found in exploring new territory in any given day. I, too, am teaching myself to do the same. It makes all the difference in life. Good for you… Live it all up!

  11. lisa
    Posted April 22, 2013 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

    thank you- this is a great message for me today. AMPLIFY.

  12. Posted April 22, 2013 at 11:44 pm | Permalink

    You’re awesome lovely Andrea!
    You hooked me up with a gratitude buddy last week and today I invited my friend who lives far away to be my second gratitude buddy. Can we have too much gratitude I ask? (Rhetorically of course, hehe:) Of course we can’t!
    Much love + gratitude, Tia

  13. Miss Britt
    Posted April 26, 2013 at 1:38 pm | Permalink

    The thing I miss most about no longer living in Florida is the ocean. It is such a mood booster!

  14. Posted May 6, 2013 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    Hey Andrea,

    Beautiful post and beautiful rituals. You made me remember to practice gratitude and see the beauty in the smallest of things. All of this equals….HAPPINESS! And boy, am I happy! :)Katie. XXX

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