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Illuminate a monthly newsletter of hope & encouragement
Copper Leaves on Teh Hope Tree Sculpture

January 2012  

In This Issue

What will the
New Year bring?
Guest Author:
Bill Scott on
Survival Preparation  

Featured Hope Tree Symbol: Adaptibility

Featured Reading, Listening & Watching

In Our Next Issue

Contact Us  

Join Us on
the Radio

Radio Microphone

Every Thursday
at 9 AM MST on 

On Thursday mornings,
fill your coffee mug, snuggle up in a comfy chair and listen to us   
live on Internet radio.

Just go to 

You will hear the show in progress as soon as the web site opens.

This hour long show features stories about hope, interviews and live conversations with guests from around the world, email and tweeted questions - PLUS -  weekly homework assignments for you
to sharpen your own
"Hope Quotient."

If you ever miss us live, the last 4 shows will be archived and available 24/7 via the station's web site by clicking on the "Archives" tab. Then find The Hope Journal listing and choose the show you want to hear.

See The Hope Tree For Yourself!

Link to The Hope Tree HD Documentary

Hope Related Gifts

Carved Wooden Hope Tree Pocket Mirror

Visit our store by clicking the picture above to see lovely gifts for a loved one or friend in need of symbols that remind them to feel hopeful and encouraged.

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Food For Thought

Fill your sails with hope.

"We cannot direct the
wind but we can  
adjust the sails." 
Dolly Parton 


The Hope Tree
What does the New Year have in store for us?

Dear Hopefuls,

I hope your New Year is off to a good start. It is only natural to wonder what the universe has in store for us in 2012. I know resolutions stopped being a part of my New Year routine a long time ago. Now I just have one singular prayer: Let me grow and change as a person this year. Let me end 2012 a better person than I was on January 1st.

And hope plays an important role in the fulfillment of that wish. I think we all basically want the same things: love, companionship, respect, meaningful work, joy, fulfillment and a sense of belonging to a community that matters to us.

It is my New Years wish for all of you that you move in the direction of those people and those things that bring the most meaning and satisfaction into your lives
. Make it a year focused on possibility, hope and encouragement.

Now that will be something to celebrate come next New Years Eve!  

Carol Jeanotilla & the Hope Tree Gang

If you have enjoyed what you see here in this newsletter, find even more helpful and hopeful information at:

Bill Scott - Survival Expert  

Hope: The Ultimate Survival Preparation by Bill Scott

People putting survival plans together tend to start in the wrong place. They commonly begin with the physical items, basic needs; food, water, shelter, medical, etc. These are obviously important, we can only survive a few seconds without air; days without water, weeks without food. Then there are the situations when we face some emanate and dangerous threat. This might be a physical confrontation with an attacker, fire, an accident, extreme cold, flooding, or severe weather. Being prepared for every situation is good of course, however, total physical readiness is obviously impractical. No amount of planning, packing, practicing, honing skills and gathering resources is going to guarantee survival in every situation. The fact is that physical preparations are prone to the possibility of failure.

    In actuality the core of a battle is not physical at all; the most important preparations for it don't fit in a duffle bag, or a cellar pantry. They aren't cashes of gold buried in the yard, or government agencies tasked with responding to your plight. They are not even people, not doctors, financial advisors, parents or friends. In fact, at the heart of every challenge we will face is the hope within us. Hope is a life flame that lights our way, gives us energy, and moves us on. When hope exists we experience its strength, endurance, patience, calmness, and even contentment. The vacuum from its absence draws; fear, despair, anxiety, and the debilitating effects of irrationality. It is only when we can see by its light that we are able to boldly engage life's challenges. Despair and fear can paralyze even the best prepared person. For that reason alone no amount of physical preparation is of any use if it can't be employed.

Continuing reading Bill's story . . . 
African Turtle Symbol for AdaptibilityOur Featured Symbol from 
The Hope Tree: Adaptibility
When facing a diagnosis of cancer, adaptability is a skill that we must all develop. This African symbol translates as "Denkyem:" a turtle or crocodile because they live in the water, yet breathe the air, demonstrating an ability to adapt to changing circumstances.

As we are called upon to thrive in this challenging time, let us remember what the turtle teaches us: breathe, swim, rest, wait. Like the turtle we can climb into our shell when needed to recuperate, poke our head out to test to air when you are able and then extend all four legs to walk away when we are ready.

There is no shame in retreating when needed. We all have the right to just check out for a while to recuperate, recharge, refill our cup with energy. This is the very nature of adaptibility. Retreat so we can fight another day.
And a clear focus on what really matters is a critical component of survival. So many of the things we allow to use up precious energy are really not important - and nothing shines a light on that reality better than the need to survive a serious illness.

Modern day lyrics from the James Taylor song "Like Everyone She Knows" inspire us to weather the storm with adaptability:

Hold tight to your heart's desire
Never ever let it go
Let nobody fool you into giving it up too soon

Tend your own fire
Lay low and be strong

Wait awhile
Wait it out
Wait it on out
Wait it out
It'll come along

So many books to read, so little time.Featured reading . . . 

There are many fine authors out there who have written very inspiring books about the power of hope and encouragement. Every month we will recommend several that we find to be exceptional.

Click to order directly through

Head First: The Biology of Hope and the Healing Power of the Human Spirit by Norman Cousins (Dec 1, 1990)  ISBN-10: 0140139656 & ISBN-13: 978-0140139655 
The Secrets of Being Happy: The Technology of Hope, Health, and Harmony (Volume 1) by Dr Richard Bandler & Garner Thomson(Mar 18, 2011) ISBN-10: 0982780400 & ISBN-13: 978-0982780404

H is for Hair Fairy: An Alphabet of Encouragement and Insight for Kids (and Kids at Heart!) with Cancer by Kim Martin (Author) & Wend Boomhower (Illustrator) ISBN-10: 1412049792 & ISBN-13: 978-1412049795

HeadphonesYou can also listen . . .

Carol posts many recordings of interviews and shows from her radio series, The
Hope Journal, on These recordings can provide hope and encouragement 24/7 if you feel your hope waning.

Click the link below to listen in:


By the time you have read this newsletter, Mary will have also appeared on our radio show, The Hope Journal for Thursday, January 12, 2011. You will be able to listen to this show later in the week in the archives.

Should you miss any show you can always listen to the most recent past 4 archived versions at the same web site: just click the "Archive" tab. Find The Hope Journal listing and choose the show you want to hear.

MonitorOr watch . . .

Settle in a comfy chair and watch the inspiring documentary, The Amazing Story of The Hope Tree. Whether you are interested in how it was created, what it means or how it inspires patients, families anf staff alike - it is well worth the break in your day to have a peaceful, inspiring time.

Here is the free link:

Liz Adamson's one-woman four act play, Journey, is now available via her website at or by typing Liz Adamson in the search field at You It is an amazing piece revolving around the concept that is possible to thrive with cancer - not just survive.

IN OUR FEBRUARY 2012 ISSUE, we'll learn about the unending continuum of hope now matter the outcome of an illness . . .

We will be having a fascinating discussion about the continuum of hope even when an illness ends in the loss of a life. Hope does not end with death. We'll be discussing this very subject with Mary Duell, RN, NP from Denver, Colorado.
By the time you have read this newsletter, Mary will have also appeared on our radio show, The Hope Journal, for Thursday, January 12, 2011. You will be able to listen to this show later in the week in the archives at
The February 2012 issue of Illuminate will showcase another symbol from The Hope Tree: Bravery. We will also delve into research about the role encouragement plays in nursing: both for staff and patients. Look for new book recommendations too.

And don't forget to join us on the radio for The Hope Journal every Thursday at 9 AM MST. Just go to The show can be heard as soon as the web site opens. You can even stream video from the studio of a live show if you sign in. 

Have a wonderful January. Thanks for joining us once again and we'll see you in mid-February!  
Contact Info

Carol Jeanotilla answers all of your emails personally. Please feel free to write her at: