Adventure is Out There!

I was once at a workshop – quite coincidentally I might add – with best-selling author and motivational speaker Jon Gordon (the Energy Bus). In this small and intimate chat (I would guess there were about 20 of us) Jon asked us to share what movie would be a good representation of our life?

The question felt hard at first, but once it came to me, I was 100% certain.  My movie is UP.


This Disney Pixar creation from 2009 has long been my favorite movie, and I always thought it was because it was cute, funny, touching … inspirational.  However, when thinking of it in terms of the story of my life, it became clear there was so much more there.

For those of you that haven’t seen it – WHAT IS THE MATTER WITH YOU? Just kidding … I will try not to spoil it.  But for the love of God, see this movie. You will not be disappointed.

So, what was it about this movie that spoke to me so personally, and so much so that I would identify with it as parallel to my own story?  With just a few minutes to share it with the rest of the attendees in our workshop, I shared this:  My life – so far – has been an adventure. And while it certainly has NOT gone the way I expected, and has taken many twists and turns, it has been a rewarding path filled with love, laughter, good friends, and yes – adventure! 

What makes this movie so touching though is the yin and yang of adventure and MISadventure, sadness and joy, innocence and evil, expectation and disappointment, love and loss, surprise and delight.

Meet the “cast”:

Carl & Ellie – childhood compadres. Who fall in love, and build a life.


Tear Jerker Alert:  The opening sequence is P-O-W-E-R-F-U-L!

Carl over time grows into Mr. Frederickson – a curmudgeon, who is angry with the way things turned out. And not having any of it.

Carl meets Russell – an innocent, big-hearted boy, who won’t take no for an answer.


By the way, in our home we have have made up a term that we use on the regular:




The act of a person who has entered into a complaining rant.

“I’m hungry. I’m tired. My feet hurt.  You’re mean.”

For the record, it is usually ME who is russelling. I find it quite amusing. And fun.


They meet Dug, the dog (Come on! This is brilliant!)

An adorable, and oh-so-loyal pup with an acute case of A.D.D.  “Squirrel!”


Tear Jerker Alert:  Carl has been disappointed and frustrated with their “simple life” and all that they never accomplished.  Until he learns that his Ellie saw their “simple life” as her adventure.


Such begins a new adventure, where the gang meets Kevin (who they later learn is a girl), and learn that someone they’ve looked up to and idolized, wasn’t at all who they thought. That happens sometimes, doesn’t it? Sigh.

Someone you never actually see, but deserves great kudos in my opinion, is Michael Giacchino, who wrote the score.  I love this theme song MARRIED LIFE so much that it is actually my ringtone.  Have a listen below at what he did with this – he keeps the same melody, with a twist:  You’ll hear it UP and peppy when on adventures and slow and melancholy during the sad moments.

Listen &/or watch the video here:

So, yep, that pretty much sums it UP. I’ve taken a zig-zagged path, found love in places I didn’t expect, laughed, loved, cried, lost, and still I am loving this adventure, and continuing UP. (With my band of compadres who make it all worthwhile!)

carl and ellie aged.png

In the words of our lovely Ellie: “Thanks for the adventure – now go have a new one!”

ellie badge


You Heard the Lady,

p.s. What movie would you say defines YOUR life?


4 thoughts on “Adventure is Out There!”

  1. Tracy Lee! Once again you entertain me with your lively prose! So relatable and thought provoking! I look forward to your next blog! XO!! Ps…Totally awesome movie on so many levels!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. We love the UP movie in the Sparkle Family. Xoxo. But I would have to say the closest movie to my life is Pretty in Pink. You see I moved 14 times before high school and I was always the new kid who didn’t fit in. But what I realized was being myself was what I really needed to do and the people that mattered would be my friends anyway and the other people that judged didn’t matter at all. I become proud of being different!

    Liked by 1 person

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