Posted by on Dec 27, 2010 in Uncategorized | 15 Comments

Happy Holidays

I will begin this Holiday Letter as I did the one a year ago.  There is a beauty in consistency that my scattered – always wanting something new – way of thinking finds very hard to embrace. But I am growing.  Trying to appreciate the beauty of something once done, repeated . . .

Then I will be off to the races.

‘Tis the season

to be a lot of things

To some this is the season that speaks of their belief in God and their way of life. So many important holidays converge at this time of year.  To some it’s about family and togetherness.  More than a few see the holidays and all of their attendant trappings as nothing more than a corporate bamboozle that has co-opted religious beliefs to put retailers in the black.  To others it is just a mountain of work, hassle and unending expectations.

But I am not going to talk about any of that here.

I am going to talk about what I do every year at this time:

I start a new Academic Year

in the pursuit of

Measurably Better.

It is my personal field of study.

You can’t get a degree in it because, by definition, as soon as you stop pursuing it you fail.

The weird thing about majoring in Measurably Better is that you often don’t know which courses you’ve signed up for until they’re over.

This Years Courses:

The Comfort of Others 211

I have taken this course before, on a number of occasions. I am a woman who never has a lot of friends. Solitude always entices, and all too often, envelops me.  I have a hard time maintaining friendships because I am so comfortable being alone. I get friends because I genuinely like most people but I often lose them through neglect.

This year I am taking this course yet again but this time it is a little different.  Usually this course finds me.  I get adopted by some one who sees through my reticence and has enough fortitude not to allow me to give in to my lesser self a.k.a. Loner Lynn.

This year, however, I made an affirmative decision to take this course.  The textbook is the same: Basic Principles of Getting Out of the House but this year I am using The Vivian Edition.

I saw her in a crowd and I told her to give me her contact information and put it in my purse.  She is the kind of friend who doesn’t expect you to be anything other than what you are but is also just as likely to call you on your nonsense when she thinks you are doing the wrong thing.  Gotta love it.  Most definitely love her.

A   Great attitude.  Excellent Class Participation.


Don’t Wait Until You are Irate 201

As you may recall I took the beginners’ course last year. In 2010, I took a more advanced class. In the 101 class, I identified the nature of the problem.  This year in 201 I am doing something about it.

For those unfamiliar with My Patch of Land Theory, I will describe it as follows:  I had a very long fuse with an extraordinarily big BOOM waiting at the end. It was not working for me. I would wait too long to express my displeasure and once I did it was such a ridiculous scene.  And while I did manage to back up a few people who were taking advantage of my good nature (which is not always a bad thing) usually at the end of the day I do believe I would get dismissed as a hysterical babe.

Now, I have learned to speak sooner and calmer.  And though I find the snail’s pace of this kind of change challenging I am able to handle it fairly well because of the next course it seems I took.

C+ The student does not yet fully grasp the concepts taught in this course but there has been some noticeable if inconsistent improvement.


Patience 101

I make a point of not rushing. Regularly during the day I say.  “Stop.  Are you being deliberate?”  For those of you Working the Rules with me this is Rule 10(A).

Patience is an all day thing.  It is not something you can decide to be.  You have to work on becoming that way by keeping an eye out for when you aren’t and make a deliberate decision to do otherwise – right then – at that moment.   The idea is to string enough of those moments together to change the character of your days.

D+ Student has no natural aptitude for the material and has made minimal, yet perceptible, progress.

So that’s that for me.

What about you?

I hope that The You, you are today has grown somewhat from The You that was here last year.

I hope you found respites of calm in whatever rough waters you have traveled.

I hope that whatever struggles you have had this past year abate a bit in the next.

And as I said before:

Whatever your aspirations are

I hope next year brings you

Much of what you want

All of what you need

And some joy you didn’t expect.



  1. Arnell
    December 27, 2010

    Hello people, hope that Christmas was all you expected and than some. Judgelynn, you put that short story together very well, there is not much more to added, because of the way it was written, well thought of, exceptional.

    Patients is something of process for me, but over time my patients have become so much better, things that used to bother me don’t bother me no more.

    People will try you, over and over again, I just tell people strait up now, they don’t like it but they’ll get over it and if not, than oh well.

    Being nice doesn’t always work, we have users and abusers out there that don’t care what they say or do.

    Some things I have patients and tolorance for and others, don’t waste my time with.

    Peace ya’ll

    I’m out.

  2. Monique
    December 27, 2010

    Very well said “Aunt Lynn.” As for me, I’ve registered for school to pursue my bachelors in HR. I worked on it years ago but now set to accomplish it. I even have more goals that I want to achieve. I definitely must let patience work through me as a divine instrument to help accomplish what is required of me as a woman and productive citizen. Lately, I’ve been feeling a strong urge to pursue a law degree.(I’ll be done with HR degree August 2011). I just turned 37 December 9th. What do u think? Am I too far along in age to start a career in law? Personally I believe that I can and with extraordinary woman as superb role models like yourself…..I know I can. Okay, i’m done for now, I feel like I’m slightly off topic with your post. It’s early I just ate breakfast, full and sleepy again. FYI: You do a really nice job cutting your own hair.

  3. Ms. E
    December 27, 2010

    Hello JLynn and all

    I hope everyone had a blessed holiday.

    Love the way you write and I love to read what you write Lynn. Very inspirational.

    Whenever I lack sharing information or feelings about myself it is due to the fact that I’m being a coward. Not afraid to share but afraid of the reaction and response from those I’ve shared with. Of course that was in the past with only certain people but I no longer care about that anymore.

    I always get out of the house and do things when I have the spare time and try to have fun doing it.

    Anyway love the letter, not much more I can say.

  4. Ms. E
    December 27, 2010


  5. Vivian
    December 27, 2010

    Love you too Judge Lynn Toler!!!!!!!

  6. OhioRuthie
    December 27, 2010

    Loved the letter..and the hat!!!

    I want to share I have a new rescue thanks to PJ (Phylis) she sent a generous donation to me for Christmas so I have the money on hand to help this cat. PJ THANKS SO MUCH…this cat wouldn’t have made it without you! I call her Piper..she is emaciated and has skin like a lizard I don’t know if its the malnutrition causing it or a reaction to a previous flea infestation. We see the vet at 4pm today. She’s around 6 years old but looks more like six months..she’s been hung by the legs/arms and neck by a kid. Rarely fed except by a neighbor. The cat hid from the family but has been full of nudges and kisses since her arrival. She’s eaten and used the litter box so that’s a huge good sign. I took a picture carefully so you can’t see anything upsetting…she’s very cute! The family got this cat from an ad in the paper for a free cat to good home. How I wish people would be more careful with their pets and who they give them to. She’s declawed so was at their mercy. I don’t know who I want to hit more those who abused the cat or the woman who gave them the cat!

    Happy Monday!

  7. OhioRuthie
    December 27, 2010

    Disregard link to photo…oops

  8. Arnell
    December 27, 2010

    I love the hat judgelynn.

  9. Sheila
    December 27, 2010

    Hi everyone

    I hope all had a wonderful holiday!

    Like the letter JL. WHat did you get for Xmas JL. Your sister was that a surprise?

    I need to work on some stuff JL , Imma register for some classes myself, I am reading a book now call no apologizes, so lets see where it takes me.

    Judge Lynn I luv you for free!! I get so much from your words, I am gonna ride this ride til it stops.

    Peace & Blessings

  10. Mini
    December 27, 2010

    Hello All, Judge Lynn what an excellent letter. You out do yourself each and every time you put pen to paper. You are just amazing! I need to say it again, YOU ARE JUST AMAZING! WOW!

    @Ruthie, what a wonderful thing you do, caring for those animals
    @PJ(Phylis) , what a great expression of generosity.

  11. Kris81
    December 28, 2010

    JLT- I love the holiday letter. It made me take some time out today to think about what classes Im gonna take this year!
    Happy holidays everyone : )

  12. OhioRuthie
    December 28, 2010

    Thanks Mini…I love these little creatures 🙂 The vet said she is going to make it!!!! She may never recover mentally and always gorge on food..but she should be okay..shots and topical meds. Thanks again PJ!!!

  13. Ravis
    December 28, 2010

    Thanks Judge Lynn.

    I was trying to see if open enrollment has begun for the spring 2011 classes.

    I wanted to register for the Patience 101 class but it appears that this class is closed. As usual, I’m always late. 🙁 Maybe next summer or fall. 🙂 🙂

    Love the photo of you and E on FB. Very nice and lovely.


  14. Pj
    December 28, 2010

    Hey Everyone~

    Beautiful letter Judge Lynn!!!! Love it!!! I must say though, I would have given you a higher grade in the patience department. A few incidents come to mind.
    1. The little kid who you had that encounter with on the tennis court and dumb-daddy just looked
    2. Looking for keys ( I think) for hours at your tennis class and then proceeded to take the class
    3. Biting your tongue with some lady when shopping. Can’t recall all the details
    4. You not coming across that bench on some of those clowns in your courtroom.
    … Just to name a few and you managed to remain calm . AND for that my dear, you deserve an “A”!
    A person with no patience wouldn’t have handled these situations like you did. I don’t know you personally but I think you’re being a little hard on yourself. I lack patience and I probably would have

    1. Pinched the little knot-head kid
    2. Said forget the keys and went home and got back in my bed
    3. Told that lady a few choice words
    4. lost that gig for flyin’ over that bench
    So you’re on the right track. People like myself, need help! Help!:)

    You ARE a beautiful person and we really do appreciate all that you do! Just taking the time out to acknowledge us regularly speaks volumes. I’m sure people tell you this all the time but your advice actually saves lives!!!! We love you for that!!!!!

    Ruthie- you’re more than welcome!!! I’m just glad it helped.
    And thanks Mini!

    Take Care
    (sorry for any typos)

  15. Cre
    December 28, 2010


    Hey Judge! Check this out: What ever you are eating and drinking, just keep consuming it because girl you looking young. I know you work-out alot. Which has inspired me to get back in the gym. So tell us about your diet so I can do that too cause girl you are look good!

    PJ is right, you are helping alot of people. You helped me with my public speaking issue. You helped me identify my problem which is going to sound silly (lol) but part of my problem was I didn’t want to make eye contact with my audience and I didn’t want all those people focusing on me. Soooo, now I practice almost everyday with being seen and making eye contact with folk. Anyway Thank You! And if can think of any thing else please share because I’m not out of the woods yet. …PEACE

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