Would you feed your bunny Coca-Cola?

  • Would you pour Orange Fanta into your dog’s bowl?
  • Would you give your cat Skittles?
  • Should a zookeeper feed a baby giraffe a frosted cupcake?
  • Does any other species ‘celebrate’ by giving their young ones food that harms?


You don’t have to be a vet to know what not to feed baby animals. And you don’t have to be an M.D. to know what not to feed baby humans. When we realize that we are responsible for little bodies, is there any other logical conclusion:

Stop. Feeding. Kids. Sugar.


I understand that it’s entirely opposite what our standard culture promotes. This is the same culture that has generated previously unheard of rates of obesity, diabetes and now heart disease in kids.

We “heart” our kids. Let’s care for them in ways that support their overall health.

Sugar is not love
It’s just a crutch I lean on
When I am not strong

Examine the reasons you have for giving sugar to kids. If the kids was instead a baby animal, would you still give sugar? Let’s be strong!






Finding Your Purpose: Five Surprising Questions to Ask


Having quit yet another engineering job after too many hours sitting behind the computer, I was ready for a change. So ready that I was willing to follow the advice of my good friend, Emily. She had gushed about how she and her husband found the career assessments at CU to be incredibly valuable. I didn’t really understand how they could be, but I was desperate enough to get help. (Isn’t desperation what it usually takes to ask for help?)

So, at age 55, I participated in a Career Counseling Assessment Series through the University of Colorado in Boulder. We did a ton of assessments and exercises and each was helpful. With each class, I felt layers of confusion melting away as I was beginning to recognize the true me.

The last class was called Career in Translation, led by Kevin Glavin. As part of the class, we interviewed a classmate using the following five questions. I was reminded of writing poems about pollution at age 10, the Jane Goodall book by my bedside and that my forays into engineering began with a quest to work on solar energy. It was this experience that cemented in my mind, that at my core, I’m an eco-nut. Always have been. Always will be.

What are you? What’s your purpose?

Find a friend to ask you these questions or write your answers. (Just thinking them through probably isn’t going to do it.) If you find a friend to work with, you can ask each other.

  1. Who did you admire when you were growing up? Tell me about her or him.
  2. Do you read any magazines or watch any television shows regularly? Which ones? What do you like about these?
  3. What is your favorite book or movie? Tell me the story. (What books are on your bedside now?)
  4. Tell me your favorite saying or motto, and explain how it resonates with you.
  5. What are your earliest recollections? Tell me three stories about things you recall happening to you when you were three to six years old.

When our class did this, the teacher demonstrated with one student first. It was amazing to hear her tell the plot of the Wizard of Oz, through her frame of reference. It was a COMPLETELY different story than I would have told, but it aligned with her memories, hopes and dreams.

If you try this exercise, please write here if you discovered anything about yourself or your partner.

Happy interrogating, er, interviewing!🙂

I encourage you to contact your alma mater or community resources and find out if there’s a career counseling program you can enroll in. You’re never too old to find the true you!


Joan Gregerson is a Wellness Coach, Writer and Eco-Nut! She is the author of Tuning In to Inner Peace: The Surprisingly Fun Way to Transform Your Life and the upcoming books Eco-Nut and One World Wellness. Visit www.PositiveEnergyWorks.com for more info.

A Mother’s Day Perspective: I Didn’t Ask to Be Born …or Did I?

Funny! I recently heard from my daughter that she remembers me crying once (maybe more!) on Mother’s Day …something about me saying I didn’t want anything and then I didn’t get anything then I cried. Oh how terrible! That’s exactly the way I remember it as a kid.

Throw all that out the window and just enjoy yourself, re-parenting yourself and others. Appreciate your mom for being a mere human, as you are. And our kids for reminding us who we truly are. And Happy Mother’s Day!

Positive Energy Works Blog

Let’s be honest. As a kid, Mother’s Day feels like a big, splatty serving of guilt pudding. Thank your mom for …everything. Your mom works so hard for you. She cooks and cleans and does your laundry. She packs your lunch and fixes your hair.

It’s not so much about thanking her, as apologizing to her for ruining her life.  Did it feel like this to you? You must ask forgiveness for being such a burden, to someone who does everything you can’t do for yourself.

I bristled at this. I felt like, Hey, I didn’t ask to be born!

When we brought home a puppy, we didn’t expect her to thank us for feeding and walking her, or picking up her poop in the yard. It was our choice. We picked her out at the pet store and brought her home. So, directly or indirectly, we chose to care…

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Poem: Run for the Hills (NaPoWriMo 28)

Piles of pies and cookies
Surround me
And I’ve only got so many
“No”s in me
Just before the meltdown
I run for the hills

Then Mountains and trees
Surround me
I’ve only got to be here
To be free
Just relax and let down
I run to the hills
To be free

Poem: Iridescent Mixed Messages (NaPoWriMo 26b)

Grey hovering clouds
Obscure the hills
I know are there

The next curve
Changes everything
Snow begins to fall
And the sun breaks through

Mixed Messages


About the poem:

After arriving in Estes Park today, I saw a little girl walking with her grandma, eating a big stick of pink candy. Love and junk food  is often interwoven deeply as a shiny mixed message too. I’ve been the giver and receiver of this one.

Poem: My Long Found Friend (NaPoWriMo 26)

You know who you are
We were once so close
And now we’re so far

I know the challenges you’ve faced
The people and place you’ve embraced
It hasn’t been easy
But you’ve done your best

When you feel discouraged
Think of me
I’m your own personal cheer squad
Yelling and chanting
Doing flips in the air
Reminding you, to go for it
Oceans separate us
But I’m right beside you

Your smell and your smile
I can’t erase
Your sweetness and your tears
An indelible trace

That love we share
Can never end
You are my
Long found friend


Poem: Rat’s Den (NaPoWriMo 25)

My room was a rat’s den
Bits of paper
Empty glasses
Thngs to give away
Things to return
Covered the space where the carpet had been

I finally hit a turning point
There were more things lost
Than things I could find
My mind mainly
My mind plainly

A place for everything
Everything was all over the place
A place for everything
Aha, everything needs a place

I lugged bureaus and shelves, drawers and the chair
I moved them from here and put them over there
But that didn’t work
So I moved some right back
I switched out chairs for shelves
Heaven glimmered from hell
I flipped this and that
Became an organizing rat
I turned on the light
As day turned to night

I found a gift card
And a check
My cousin’s address
(In Quebec)
The receipts for my business trip
The jacket that won’t unzip
And after several more hours
I found the floor
That, and my peace of my mind,
Were what I’d been searching for

My rat’s den
Became my den
My office
My study

Next time
Don’t let it go so long
Tell me to clean it up
Good buddy



Poem: The Fourth Commandment (NaPoWriMo 23)

Honor thy mother and father

It’s hard to sit still
When the extension of ourselves
Is being desecrated
When air, soils and water are being contaminated
When forests are being obliterated
It’s hard to nod politely
To accept the reasons why

Honor thy mother and father
While corporate greed
Is predictable
And government bureacracy
Is intractable
Why are so many
Of faith
So unmotivated
So unconcerned

Honor thy mother and father

Why preach love and mercy
And caring for the poor
But look away
From pesticides
And slave wages for workers and
Obscene conditions for
Factory farm animals

Honor thy mother and father

Like Luther condemned
Status quo then
I reject the teachings
That fail to teach love
I reject the preachings
That fail to preach truth

Honor thy mother and father

To neglect is
To destroy
To treat our planet
Like a throwaway toy

It’s the habitual
Turning a blind eye
It’s the willful ignorance
That masquerades as bliss

Honor thy mother and father
So that it may be well with you
And that you may live long on the earth

Mother Earth, Father Sky
What have we lost?

Now we have low, low prices
But at what cost?

Faith and food
Nature and nurture
Respect and responsibility

Mother Earth, Father Sky
What have we done?


About the poem:

Let’s wake up to the connections. Join me for “One World Wellness”, Sunday at 3 pm from May-July.

Poem: I Say What I Want (NaPoWriMo 22)

I say yes when I mean yes

I say no when I mean no

I know what I want

You know what I want


I’m nicer now that

I say what I want

Less drama

Less trauma

Not as much misery

Not as much mystery

But kinder

I know what I want

I say what I want


I want to be kinder

To myself and others


When I’m kinder

I say what I want


About the poem

This is how I actually behave… on a good day. Today was a good day!

Poem: The Baths by Generation (NaPoWriMo 21)

shared and short
shallow and shivering
in a queue of siblings
were the baths of my youth
all business
all clean

shared and bubbled
storied and lingering
stacking cups
and dinosaurs
were the baths of
my young daughters
little people with
little bubble hairdos

solo by candlelight
goblet of wine
exquisite music
lavender bubbles
are the baths of
the daughters
when young women
they became
exquisite reward
spa well envisioned
and earned

i never thought of that
said mom
who tried it
and was hooked
the guilt of luxury
washed away by lavender

what smells so good
said grandma
who tried it
and was hooked
though wrinkled

Poem: Color-full (NaPoWriMo 20)

Art palette

Browns, blacks, greens
Yellow highlights
Blue undertones

Painting my heart out
Painting my heart in
Mind blissfully empty
Soul color-full



About the poet:

These days, Joan Gregerson is teaching poetry and wellness classes and taking painting classes with Molly at Violet Hive Art Therapy and Healing, 3107 E Colfax Ave, Denver, CO. More info at positiveenergyworks.com/classes.html

Poem: Dum-Dums Mystery (NaPoWriMo 19)


The bowl of dum-dums
They silently beckon
While thousands of dollars
the teller must reckon

Take one, two, three
Make it four
When the teller ain’t looking
Take three more

Cream soda




Poem: Yoo-buh (NaPoWriMo 18)

Thanks for picking me up
I drive for Uber too

What’s that you say?
You drive for you-buh?

What’s that you say?
I drive for Uber

That’s what I said
I drive for You-buh too!


About the poem:

I love that there are still regional accents in our sprawling US of A. This weekend, I learned that in Maine Uber is called “You-buh”. Love it!

Poem: Conference Claustrophobia (NaPoWriMo 16)

Day one
Is so fun
It’s on day two
That it always hits me

The people
The projects
The problems
The opportunities

But increasingly overwhelming

The uneasiness builds
Til suddenly
I break out of the breakouts
And onto the street
I’m walking now
To my own beat
I sing to myself
Missing the keynote
I sing to my own beat
Life again feels sweet

Poem: Tiny Seeds


Tiny seeds
Make tiny leaves
Small enough to ignore

Who are those
That do believe
Toiling on every chore

Then each veggie grows
And finally it goes
At the store

About the poem:

Today, as part of a conference we visited three different urban garden/farms. It’s pretty remarkable how the food that comes to us in the store or farmers’ market, starts from these incredibly tiny seeds, and these teeny tiny plants. Being around them makes me believe in miracles.