Music Monday · Nostalgia · Recipes

Music Monday | 19 Songs For Your Spring Mix Tape + BONUS: Spring Mix Salad Recipes!

It’s May, It’s May!  The lusty month of May!

Well, actually, May is more than half over, but May is the quintessential month of Spring (at least sitting here in the Northern Hemisphere it is). So we thought it would be good to put together another fun collection of springtime music on this May Monday… These are songs that have to do with spring, songs that remind us of spring, songs that feel like spring, and songs that will likely put a spring in your step and maybe, just maybe, put a little love in your heart.

Speaking of love, did you watch the fabulous Royal Wedding this past weekend? Meghan Markle looked gorgeous, and Prince Harry looked dashing as ever. Springtime weddings can be tricky of course, as the unpredictable weather can be a challenge. Here in Colorado, it could be snowing in May. Or it could be 80 degrees. Right now, it’s 50 and rain… But the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, of course, experienced made-to-order wedding weather—crisp and clear with “wall-to-wall sunshine” as one meteorologist predicted.

The perfect spring weather, we’d say. Continue reading “Music Monday | 19 Songs For Your Spring Mix Tape + BONUS: Spring Mix Salad Recipes!”

Childhood · Nostalgia · Parenting · Stories

In the Circus of Life, Let Us Remember Love

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The lights dim, and the first preview lights up the screen. Next to us, the speakers shake with war sounds, and in front of us, large, scary men clad in all black seem to be lunging our way.

Out of the corner of my eye, I see my daughter’s face. Zoey’s eyes are clouded with concern as she burrows her chin down into her coat. For a little girl who really doesn’t like movies, I wonder if bringing her to this show will leave her scarred for life.

* * *

After stumbling across The Greatest Showman soundtrack and listening to its catchy, joyful, life-affirming tunes, I knew I needed to see the movie. And when I put it on in the car one morning as I drove Zoey to school—and she knew most of the lyrics to This is Me by the time we arrived—I knew we needed to go see it.

Yet I was hesitant about the idea. Although she’s almost seven, Zoey and I have never been to a movie together. Even talk of going to one makes her panic a little, her response always the same, “But movies scare me. Do we really have to? Can’t I just watch something on my Kindle?” Her reaction to seeing movies has always surprised me, as I use to love going to them as a child.

But this time was different. When I asked if she’d like to go, she offered up a resounding ‘yes’.

* * *

Thankfully, after the previews end and the movie starts, Zoey perks up. She watches the whole thing, barely blinking, enthralled by the story. I’m sure it helps that there are exotic animals and choreographed dances and—of course—scenes filled with the music she has grown to know and love over the past few days, but even so, I’m still amazed at her entrancement.

As we leave the theater, Zoey twirls and leaps beside me, pretending she is the trapeze artist who gracefully and bravely flew through the air into her partner’s waiting arms.

She’s working on story comprehension in school, so I toss out the question that seems to be commonplace these days:

“So what was that about, Zoey?”

“Love,” she quickly responds.

Before I can agree, she continues her answer.

“I mean, the guy and that girl do get together, and Barnum goes back to his family at the end, but it’s not a love story,” she clarifies. “It’s more of a love lesson.”

I stop walking and turn toward Zoey, the early afternoon sun causing me to blink as I look her way.

“How so?” I ask, my curiosity getting the better of me. 

“Well,” Zoey replies. “I think it’s trying to remind us that if you surround yourself with everything you love, happiness will find you.”

It seems the movie has left no scars, just a perfect pearl of beautiful Zoey wisdom. I smile, breathing a sigh of relief, as I bend down and pull her in for a hug.

“Yes, Zoey,” I say. “You’re right. Just like love and happiness have found me, right here, wrapped up with you.”

* * *

Later that night, as I lay next to Zoey as she slips into sleep, I think about her take away from the movie and the lyrics to one of its main songs, a song that is in both the opening and closing scenes:

It’s everything you ever want
It’s everything you ever need
And it’s here right in front of you
This is where you wanna be

And there in the dark, listening to Zoey’s soft breath, feeling her damp hair splayed out on my chest, I can’t help but think of the heart-wrenching happiness I feel right here, right now. It’s always in moments like these—and like the one we experienced in the parking lot earlier—where everything else seems so much less important. All the money in the world? Who cares. A big house, a fancy car, or expensive toys? Totally not necessary. All the things considered luxuries? Don’t really need them.

It’s simple, really—a lesson so obvious that even a six-year-old could find it hidden within the bright lights and vibrant colors and hear it tucked away in the words of a few amazingly produced songs:

Be with the people you love.
Live a life you love.
Love who you are.
Do everything with love.

In this crazy circus of life,
if we just remember to simply choose love,
we will have everything important.

We will have everything we ever really need.

* * *

IMG_2580Just like P.T. Barnum did in The Greatest Showman, this sweet little girl of mine has a million dreams about living a life surrounded by all the things she loves. I’m equal parts proud and honored to introduce you to something Zoey is simply in love with, her own little corner of the internet, The Zoey Chronicles. She’s beyond excited about this little project of hers, which we created to help her learn how to type, become a writer, and most importantly, follow her little heart and live a life that is authentically hers. Check it out here, and while you’re at it, maybe leave a comment or like. She’ll probably love you forever for it, and perhaps along the way, she’ll teach you a lesson or two. I can practically guarantee it, as she’s done it here time and time again.


coreyCorey is a writer, graphic designer, and mom to her amazing daughter, Zoey. Here at The Nostalgia Diaries, her goal is to simplify, enhance, and engage people’s lives by helping them focus on the most important things: remembering, appreciating, believing, and becoming. It’s all about celebrating the past to create better days today.


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At The Nostalgia Diaries, our goal is to help you simplify, enhance, and engage your lives by focusing on the most important things: remembering, appreciating, believing, and becoming. It’s all about celebrating the past to create better days today.

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Nostalgia

Looking Back, Looking Forward: Celebrating One Year of Blogging

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It feels like just yesterday that my fingers started furiously tapping on a keyboard, writing the very first stories that would become the very first posts here at The Nostalgia Diaries.

But it wasn’t yesterday. It was a year ago.

One year.
Continue reading “Looking Back, Looking Forward: Celebrating One Year of Blogging”

Nostalgia · Stories

Week 35: Seasons of Love | Everyday Nostalgia

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My daughter Zoey’s two-year-old smile spreads wide across her face as I lean over and unbuckle her from her carseat.

“Are you ready for some fun?” I ask.

Her response of a giggle fills the car as I lift her free and blow a raspberry kiss against the high curve of her little cheek. We emerge into the brightness of the day and then stand still for a moment, blinking as our eyes adjust to the hot, overhead sun.

It’s late August, and Zoey and I are in Ohio visiting my parents. For me, this trip has become more of a necessity than a luxury given the fact that everything back home seems to be coming apart at the seams: Life has been hard, love has all but faded, and my heart has become a veritable wasteland.

I had miraculously managed to stay relatively strong in spite of the circumstances, but after we boarded the plane and began our trip back East, exhaustion finally swept over me.  Continue reading “Week 35: Seasons of Love | Everyday Nostalgia”

Childhood · Nostalgia

Remember Reminder #16: There Are Many Ways to Say ‘I Love You’

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#rememberreminder: There Are Many Ways to Say ‘I Love You’

As I close my front door behind me, I hear my daughter Zoey’s feet before I even see her. She scurries across the kitchen floor and then jumps up into my outstretched arms.

“Yay,” she gently sighs as lays her head on my shoulder. “You’re home.”

* * *

‘I love you’ can be said in so many different, wonderful ways, without even speaking those three words: Continue reading “Remember Reminder #16: There Are Many Ways to Say ‘I Love You’”