by Joy Zimmerman

Note by Note: Hats Off to 2020! | No. 23 | 1.17.20

My word of intention for this new year is “gutsy.” I originally toyed with “fearless” but decided that a certain amount of fear will be my companion if I’m living right.  Choosing gutsiness, I’m declaring “Hats Off to 2020!” 


Note by Note: Until the Dawn | No. 21 | November 19, 2019

We are creatures of habit, aren’t we? 

Most of us drive to work the same way, hang out with the same people, and follow familiar routines. We seek patterns and predictability to help us make sense of the world. 


Note by Note: Evensong | No. 20 | October 23, 2019 

I’m currently writing a song called “Not Enough Time in a Lifetime”, but I haven’t had enough time to finish it. Seriously. 

  • When your head hits the pillow, do you usually feel your day was well spent? 
  • Do you

Note by Note: My'Rish Blessing | No. 18 | 8.15.19

“If there's a book that you want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it.”  ~Toni Morrison 

Life is rich and raw, isn’t it? As brilliant, beloved author Toni Morrison showed us time and time…

Note by Note: No Shortcut to Love | No. 17 | 7.23.19

How do you envision the road map of your life? 
Have you followed a straight line or taken many twists and turns? Enjoyed some rest areas? 

En route home from Oregon (a.k.a. the land of milk and honey), I couldn’t…

Note by Note: Messy Girl | No. 16 | 6.5.19

How messy are you? 

Me? A whole bunch. 

I distinctly remember the image that prompted Messy Girl. As I opened the rear door of my minivan, I surveyed the slew of dried-up snack fragments, mismatched sports equipment, miscellaneous papers…

Note by Note: Plant Me a Tree | No. 15 | 5.19.19 

Have you ever taken a bath in the forest? 

As in “forest bathing”? As in retreating to nature to immerse yourself in its healing powers? 

Shrinrin-yoku forest therapy was developed in Japan during the 1980s as preventive health care. Researchers…

Note by Note: Big and Wide as the Sky | No. 14 | 5.7.19

This Mother’s Day will be particularly poignant as my youngest son graduates from high school two days later. The impending empty nest will mark an ending and a beginning. 

Parenting is so complex, so challenging, so life-altering that it almost…

Note by Note: Dear John or Jane | No. 13 | 4.18.19

What were your favorite sounds from childhood? 

(I’ll give you a minute to ponder this…) 

My top picks include my mom playing piano downstairs as we went to sleep, the school librarian reading us another chapter, Stevie Wonder singing as…

Note by Note: The One I Love | No. 12 | 4.1.19

Note by Note: The One I Love | No. 12 | 4.1.19 

Do you cringe when you hear a favorite song turned into elevator music or a dance mix or sung by the Chipmunks or Weird Al? Or do you…