BJ Dumond’s first day as a pizza restaurant owner went down, literally, in flames. After that tumultuous opening, BJ survived and, today, is CEO of Simple Simon’s Pizza, a restaurant chain with 200 stores in a 10-state area. His story is one of belief, loyalty and getting up and going to work.

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Angela Parrish studied music education in university, suppressing her desire to perform as a soloist and devoting a great deal of time to accompanying others on the piano. Not any more. Today, she is a jazz singer and composer living - and working - in Los Angeles, which is no small feat.

Angela’s voice is recognized by millions – at a minimum you’ve heard her singing the opening number in the film “La La Land”. I had a chance to visit with her about her journey from Kansas to landing that gig.

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Many people feel they have a book inside of them and aspire to write. Far too often, the book just stays inside of them instead of the individual grabbing a pencil and putting it down on paper. Not so with Jeff Lazarus. Jeff, author of the just-published book "Dogtology" shares how he got the book out of his mind and onto paper.

 
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When the Berlin Wall came down in 1989, one era ended and another one began in Central and Eastern Europe. Where the older, established generation was generally taken aback by this change, the younger generation saw opportunity. From the shadows of state-controlled everything, young entrepreneurs chased ideas and created entire industries from nothing. Julita Radev was a college student in Bulgaria at the time and was one of those who created something from nothing.

 
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It's said that children laugh some 300 times a day and adults laugh only 20 times a day. Why is this? Are our lives as adults so serious? Ok, clearly adult lives have grown-up issues to deal with; we have jobs and bills and need to provide for others as well as ourselves - serious issues indeed but not issues that should prevent us from enjoying ourselves. These are not issues that hold us back from enjoying the simple things in life; from laughing at life itself.

We need to take pleasure all that we do. If we're unhappy with our lives then it's time to change things. We need to get ourselves in a place that makes us happy. We control our happiness - it's not dependent on others. We make our own happiness and how we react to what life gives us is our decision.

And laugh! Mirth is a lovely word for gaiety, being jolly and laughing. We need to feel a good belly laugh daily if at all possible. Not just a wry smile or a nod of approval to something, but a laugh that starts in our toes and rumbles up through our bodies. A laugh that shakes our entire frame as we share it with the world.

What makes you laugh? How do you tap into what you find funny? Share your thoughts with us here!

We all believe in magic.

That moment when things happen, well, "magically" and surprise us. A chance encounter that turns into a long-term relationship. A random conversation that leads to a new job. A wrong turn down a street that becomes a life-changing experience. A brain fart that becomes something cool...

There’s magic in our lives and we, to a certain extent, control how it effects us. By dreaming of what's possible, of what we envision for our lives, we set energy in motion to help make this dream possible. By believing in ourselves and believing in possibilities through good times and bad, we further summon the forces of nature to help us realize our dream. And by doing what we believe in, by taking steps and making decisions that lead toward our dream, we harness the magic in the air to bring it all together. And before our very eyes, the magic happens and our dream becomes reality.

Some of this may sound simplistic and silly; it is a simple concept that requires a lot of faith and perseverance but it's not silly. It happens to each of us all the time, even for every day situations. We just need to remain open to the possibilities and seize the day when those opportunities present themselves to us. Carpe diem!

Please share a magical experience you've had with us here!