1. always lead with your heart (because it's usually smarter than your second-guessing brain).
2. always trust your intuition (we know more than we think we do!)
3. it's ok to let yourself feel what you need to feel.
4. it's ok to be intense (sure, you'll scare the shit out of some people, but that's their problem).
5. don't settle. Expect amazing.
6. it's ok to fuck up. it's how you learn. (My mom has accepted and loved me unconditionally through far too many fuck ups to mention. Seriously - it would be
7. the painful stuff is important, respect it. (growing is painful shit. you don't go through the painful shit, you don't grow.)
8. when you're feeling sad, find a crying tree. (Yes, this means a good tree to hang out with a cry on. try it sometime - feels pretty great.)
9. take risks. sometimes, they lead to pretty great things. and sometimes, to fuck-ups (refer back to #6 here).
10. broke and happy is infinitely better than securely miserable.
11. garden lots.
12. walk lots.
13. a good dog will always see you through the tough spots.
14. don't forget to breathe.
Happy birthday to my most marvellous mom, and thanks. For numbers 1-13, and all of the other numbers I didn't have room for, too.