Current conditions: Happy with a chance of ditzy

Monday, January 31, 2011

Emancipate yourself



So this was Bob Marley's last single before he died of cancer. He writes about exactly what he stood for: Freedom and redemption. I think he's saying not to live with all the hurt and mistakes you have made in the past. Admit to them, learn from them and move on.

Gotta love such a smart man. I heard this song earlier today and it echoed in my brain all day. "Emancipate yourself from mental slavery," only you can free yourself from your own mind.

Thanks Bob, I needed that!

NEW DRAMA COMING SOON!



Almost a year after I started this blog I have been hit with a heavy drama that has finally ended. I have half written posts about it already. I've spent the better part of two weeks deciphering it all and finally put it all to rest yesterday (at least I hope and pray it's at rest).

When I have fully rested from the stress and lack of sleep I will go into detail, or as much detail as I can. No names, nothing specific, just a web of lies and contorted stories so absurd it makes me sick. The good news in all of this is that I have lost about 9 pounds and can fit into my skinny jeans again.

Yay drama!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Your Friends and Neighbors.



Congratulations to all the nominees! I guess I better start watching. D and I screened True Grit last night, it was pretty good. I am not a fan of westerns but I liked the original and the Coen Brothers did a great job remaking a classic. It must be good if I sat through a remake of a western, that's usually a great naptime for me. I also liked The Social Network but that may have something to do with my Facebook obsession.

Here's to the endless movie hype we will have to endure for the next few weeks.


Nominees for the 83rd Academy Awards

Here's the list in case you don't feel like clicking this morning:

Actor in a Leading Role

* Javier Bardem in “Biutiful”
* Jeff Bridges in “True Grit”
* Jesse Eisenberg in “The Social Network”
* Colin Firth in “The King's Speech”
* James Franco in “127 Hours”

Actor in a Supporting Role

* Christian Bale in “The Fighter”
* John Hawkes in “Winter's Bone”
* Jeremy Renner in “The Town”
* Mark Ruffalo in “The Kids Are All Right”
* Geoffrey Rush in “The King's Speech”

Actress in a Leading Role

* Annette Bening in “The Kids Are All Right”
* Nicole Kidman in “Rabbit Hole”
* Jennifer Lawrence in “Winter's Bone”
* Natalie Portman in “Black Swan”
* Michelle Williams in “Blue Valentine”

Actress in a Supporting Role

* Amy Adams in “The Fighter”
* Helena Bonham Carter in “The King's Speech”
* Melissa Leo in “The Fighter”
* Hailee Steinfeld in “True Grit”
* Jacki Weaver in “Animal Kingdom”

Animated Feature Film

* “How to Train Your Dragon” Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois
* “The Illusionist” Sylvain Chomet
* “Toy Story 3” Lee Unkrich

Art Direction

* “Alice in Wonderland”
Production Design: Robert Stromberg; Set Decoration: Karen O'Hara
* “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1”
Production Design: Stuart Craig; Set Decoration: Stephenie McMillan
* “Inception”
Production Design: Guy Hendrix Dyas; Set Decoration: Larry Dias and Doug Mowat
* “The King's Speech”
Production Design: Eve Stewart; Set Decoration: Judy Farr
* “True Grit”
Production Design: Jess Gonchor; Set Decoration: Nancy Haigh

Cinematography

* “Black Swan” Matthew Libatique
* “Inception” Wally Pfister
* “The King's Speech” Danny Cohen
* “The Social Network” Jeff Cronenweth
* “True Grit” Roger Deakins

Costume Design

* “Alice in Wonderland” Colleen Atwood
* “I Am Love” Antonella Cannarozzi
* “The King's Speech” Jenny Beavan
* “The Tempest” Sandy Powell
* “True Grit” Mary Zophres

Directing

* “Black Swan” Darren Aronofsky
* “The Fighter” David O. Russell
* “The King's Speech” Tom Hooper
* “The Social Network” David Fincher
* “True Grit” Joel Coen and Ethan Coen

Documentary (Feature)

* “Exit through the Gift Shop” Banksy and Jaimie D'Cruz
* “Gasland” Josh Fox and Trish Adlesic
* “Inside Job” Charles Ferguson and Audrey Marrs
* “Restrepo” Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger
* “Waste Land” Lucy Walker and Angus Aynsley

Documentary (Short Subject)

* “Killing in the Name” Nominees to be determined
* “Poster Girl” Nominees to be determined
* “Strangers No More” Karen Goodman and Kirk Simon
* “Sun Come Up” Jennifer Redfearn and Tim Metzger
* “The Warriors of Qiugang” Ruby Yang and Thomas Lennon

Film Editing

* “Black Swan” Andrew Weisblum
* “The Fighter” Pamela Martin
* “The King's Speech” Tariq Anwar
* “127 Hours” Jon Harris
* “The Social Network” Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter

Foreign Language Film

* “Biutiful” Mexico
* “Dogtooth” Greece
* “In a Better World” Denmark
* “Incendies” Canada
* “Outside the Law (Hors-la-loi)” Algeria

Makeup

* “Barney's Version” Adrien Morot
* “The Way Back” Edouard F. Henriques, Gregory Funk and Yolanda Toussieng
* “The Wolfman” Rick Baker and Dave Elsey

Music (Original Score)

* “How to Train Your Dragon” John Powell
* “Inception” Hans Zimmer
* “The King's Speech” Alexandre Desplat
* “127 Hours” A.R. Rahman
* “The Social Network” Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross

Music (Original Song)

* “Coming Home” from “Country Strong” Music and Lyric by Tom Douglas, Troy Verges and Hillary Lindsey
* “I See the Light” from “Tangled” Music by Alan Menken Lyric by Glenn Slater
* “If I Rise” from “127 Hours” Music by A.R. Rahman Lyric by Dido and Rollo Armstrong
* “We Belong Together” from “Toy Story 3" Music and Lyric by Randy Newman

Best Picture

* “Black Swan” Mike Medavoy, Brian Oliver and Scott Franklin, Producers
* “The Fighter” David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman and Mark Wahlberg, Producers
* “Inception” Emma Thomas and Christopher Nolan, Producers
* “The Kids Are All Right” Gary Gilbert, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte and Celine Rattray, Producers
* “The King's Speech” Iain Canning, Emile Sherman and Gareth Unwin, Producers
* “127 Hours” Christian Colson, Danny Boyle and John Smithson, Producers
* “The Social Network” Scott Rudin, Dana Brunetti, Michael De Luca and Ceán Chaffin, Producers
* “Toy Story 3” Darla K. Anderson, Producer
* “True Grit” Scott Rudin, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen, Producers
* “Winter's Bone" Anne Rosellini and Alix Madigan-Yorkin, Producers

Short Film (Animated)

* “Day & Night” Teddy Newton
* “The Gruffalo” Jakob Schuh and Max Lang
* “Let's Pollute” Geefwee Boedoe
* “The Lost Thing” Shaun Tan and Andrew Ruhemann
* “Madagascar, carnet de voyage (Madagascar, a Journey Diary)” Bastien Dubois

Short Film (Live Action)

* “The Confession” Tanel Toom
* “The Crush” Michael Creagh
* “God of Love” Luke Matheny
* “Na Wewe” Ivan Goldschmidt
* “Wish 143” Ian Barnes and Samantha Waite

Sound Editing

* “Inception” Richard King
* “Toy Story 3” Tom Myers and Michael Silvers
* “Tron: Legacy” Gwendolyn Yates Whittle and Addison Teague
* “True Grit” Skip Lievsay and Craig Berkey
* “Unstoppable” Mark P. Stoeckinger

Sound Mixing

* “Inception” Lora Hirschberg, Gary A. Rizzo and Ed Novick
* “The King's Speech” Paul Hamblin, Martin Jensen and John Midgley
* “Salt” Jeffrey J. Haboush, Greg P. Russell, Scott Millan and William Sarokin
* “The Social Network” Ren Klyce, David Parker, Michael Semanick and Mark Weingarten
* “True Grit” Skip Lievsay, Craig Berkey, Greg Orloff and Peter F. Kurland

Visual Effects

* “Alice in Wonderland” Ken Ralston, David Schaub, Carey Villegas and Sean Phillips
* “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1” Tim Burke, John Richardson, Christian Manz and Nicolas Aithadi
* “Hereafter” Michael Owens, Bryan Grill, Stephan Trojanski and Joe Farrell
* “Inception” Paul Franklin, Chris Corbould, Andrew Lockley and Peter Bebb
* “Iron Man 2” Janek Sirrs, Ben Snow, Ged Wright and Daniel Sudick

Writing (Adapted Screenplay)

* “127 Hours” Screenplay by Danny Boyle & Simon Beaufoy
* “The Social Network” Screenplay by Aaron Sorkin
* “Toy Story 3” Screenplay by Michael Arndt; Story by John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich
* “True Grit” Written for the screen by Joel Coen & Ethan Coen
* “Winter's Bone” Adapted for the screen by Debra Granik & Anne Rosellini

Writing (Original Screenplay)

* “Another Year” Written by Mike Leigh
* “The Fighter” Screenplay by Scott Silver and Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson;
Story by Keith Dorrington & Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson
* “Inception” Written by Christopher Nolan
* “The Kids Are All Right” Written by Lisa Cholodenko & Stuart Blumberg
* “The King's Speech” Screenplay by David Seidler

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Creatures of the day and night


I saw this on Huffington Post today and had to share.

Who's the Emotional Vampire in Your Life?

Judith Orloff MD
Author, 'Emotional Freedom: Liberate Yourself From Negative Emotions And Transform Your Life'

As a physician, I've found that the biggest energy drain on my patients is relationships. Some relationships are positive and mood elevating. Others can suck optimism and serenity right out of you. I call these draining people "emotional vampires." They do more than drain your physical energy. The malignant ones can make you believe you're unworthy and unlovable. Others inflict damage with smaller digs to make you feel bad about yourself. For instance, "Dear, I see you've put on a few pounds" or "You're overly sensitive!" Suddenly they've thrown you off-center by prodding areas of shaky self-worth.

To protect your energy it's important to combat draining people. The following strategies from my book "Emotional Freedom" will help you identify and combat emotional vampires from an empowered place.

Signs That You've Encountered an Emotional Vampire

* Your eyelids are heavy -- you're ready for a nap

* Your mood takes a nosedive

* You want to binge on carbs or comfort foods

* You feel anxious, depressed or negative

* You feel put down


Types of Emotional Vampires

1. The Narcissist

Their motto is "Me first." Everything is all about them. They have a grandiose sense of self-importance and entitlement, hog attention and crave admiration. They're dangerous because they lack empathy and have a limited capacity for unconditional love. If you don't do things their way, they become punishing, withholding or cold.

How to Protect Yourself: Keep your expectations realistic. These are emotionally limited people. Try not to fall in love with one or expect them to be selfless or love without strings attached. Never make your self-worth dependent on them or confide your deepest feelings to them. To successfully communicate, the hard truth is that you must show how something will be to their benefit. Though it's better not to have to contend with this tedious ego stroking, if the relationship is unavoidable this approach works.

2. The Victim

These vampires grate on you with their "poor-me" attitude. The world is always against them, the reason for their unhappiness. When you offer a solution to their problems they always say, "Yes, but..." You might end up screening your calls or purposely avoid them. As a friend, you may want to help but their tales of woe overwhelm you.

How to Protect Yourself: Set kind but firm limits. Listen briefly and tell a friend or relative, "I love you but I can only listen for a few minutes unless you want to discuss solutions." With a coworker sympathize by saying, "I'll keep having good thoughts for things to work out." Then say, "I hope you understand, but I'm on deadline and must return to work." Then use "this isn't a good time" body language such as crossing your arms and breaking eye contact to help set these healthy limits.

3. The Controller

These people obsessively try to control you and dictate how you're supposed to be and feel. They have an opinion about everything. They'll control you by invalidating your emotions if they don't fit into their rulebook. They often start sentences with "You know what you need?" and then proceed to tell you. You end up feeling dominated, demeaned or put down.

How to Protect Yourself: The secret to success is never try and control a controller. Be healthily assertive, but don't tell them what to do. You can say, "I value your advice but really need to work through this myself." Be confident but don't play the victim.

4. The Constant Talker

These people aren't interested in your feelings. They are only concerned with themselves. You wait for an opening to get a word in edgewise but it never comes. Or these people might physically move in so close they're practically breathing on you. You edge backwards, but they step closer.

How to Protect Yourself: These people don't respond to nonverbal cues. You must speak up and interrupt, as hard as that is to do. Listen for a few minutes. Then politely say, "I hate to interrupt, but please excuse me I have to talk to these other people... or get to an appointment... or go to the bathroom." A much more constructive tactic than, "Keep quiet, you're driving me crazy!" If this is a family member, politely say, "I'd love if you allowed me some time to talk to so I can add to the conversation." If you say this neutrally, it can better be heard.

5. The Drama Queen

These people have a flair for exaggerating small incidents into off-the-chart dramas. My patient Sarah was exhausted when she hired a new employee who was always late for work. One week he had the flu and "almost died." Next, his car was towed, again! After this employee left her office Sarah felt tired and used.

How to Protect Yourself: A drama queen doesn't get mileage out of equanimity. Stay calm. Take a few deep breaths. This will help you not get caught up in the histrionics. Set kind but firm limits. Say, for example, "You must be here on time to keep your job. I'm sorry for all your mishaps, but work comes first."

To improve your relationships and increase your energy level, I suggest taking an inventory of people who give you energy and those that drain you. Try to spend time with the loving, nurturing people, and learn to set limits with those who drain you. This will enhance the quality of your life.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Lunatic Fringe

I found this post that I never published. I guess I should have listened to myself. I had no idea the lunacy that would follow. Cool picture and interesting link if you're so inclined.


Full moon and everyone is nuts. When K was a baby she always acted up during a full moon, at first I thought it was a coincidence but then I noticed other strange signs. Drivers were worse than usual, people were even more rude (impossible to tell right?) and I had even less patience than usual.

This is a whole other kind of nuts and I'm not sure I can blame it on the moon. But it has been proven that behavior is indeed effected by what's going on upstairs.

Check it out here

I have a feeling it's the start of something bigger but for now I'm going to enjoy the view and hope the craziness that follows is worth it.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Who Are You?


I saw this on a cool mom blog I like to read. It's a pretty interesting way to spend a few minutes while getting to know someone at the same time. Please feel free to steal this just like I did!

I Am...Ready to make a change

I Want...To live in a world without hate

I Have...A pretty great life, I should complain less and enjoy it more

I Wish...For my daughter to grow up without conflict

I Hate...Anyone who would harm a child

I Fear...Change yet I am excited by it

I Hear...The hum of my iBook. Why is it so loud?

I Search...For the deeper meaning of things

I Wonder...How it took me this long to realize how blessed I was

I Regret...Not speaking up earlier in my life

I Love...Second chances

I Ache...For anyone in pain

I Always...Have a map

I Usually...Show up early

I Am Not...A liar

I Dance...Privately

I Sing...In my car, where I am a rockstar!

I Never...Stop worrying about my family

I Rarely...Do anything for myself

I Cry...When I watch "It's a Wonderful Life"

I Am Not Always...Perfect

I Lose...My patience sometimes but I am working on that

I'm Confused...By people's actions every single day

I Need...My family

I Should...Be kissing my husband


Who are you?

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Thirteenth Grade


I left high school a very long time ago. Long enough that I honestly cannot remember most of it. While I can't remember the day-to-day activities, I can recall the ridiculous head games that teenagers are so adept at playing. I thought and hoped that these were the things that I left on the East coast so many years ago. I was wrong. Sadly, teenage headgames pave the way for a more intense adult version, and if you know anything about me, then you know I do not like games of any variety.

I've become accustomed to the games K has learned and work with her daily on how to avoid them. Last year she wasn't the best student but this year I'm happy to report that she is doing remarkably well. She is not getting sucked into the web the class bully has tried to spin, in fact I've seen K actually walk away from this girl, something that did not happen last year. I, on the other hand, have a touch of Michael Corleone Syndrome, the biggest symptom can be seen here. I do my best to avoid games and the ritualistic bullshit that come with adulthood but it's hard to evade. In fact I think my reluctance to participate makes playing with me that much more exciting. Sure, I've been known to make a comment or two but I do not get off on the complete annihilation of anyone's character. Take this recent occurrence with a neighbor who I've always treated more like family than my own:

She had been having problem with her twenty-something son who had been living with her, I've known them both for years and have always liked them. Sure they got on each other's nerves but they managed, I was always around to lend an ear to a frustrated mom. He had finally found a place of his own and they were both relieved. One day she came to my door and told me about his car which had been totaled. K for some reason said something about him never going to college and always crashing his car. I didn't pay it any mind, she likes to go on sometimes. Later that night this woman called D and asked him to come outside for something. He came back with the most bizarre expression, apparently she was now under the impression that I had been trash talking her son, which was ridiculous. The next day I asked K if I had ever said anything bad about this boy. She said that I put her in room when their fighting got to an unpleasant level (K is not fond of anyone yelling the "f" word), other than that, no, I had never said a word. I asked her why she didn't think he went to college and she said she had confused him with my brother (who is the same age as this kid and in fact, never went to college) I asked her if anyone had ever said bad things about this boy and she said "only his mom."

Your honor, the defense rests.

I am not going to be the bad guy, to my neighbor, to my friends or to anyone in my life. Especially when I did nothing wrong. If people need a scapegoat, great, just find another one. If my neighbor would rather be mad at me for things I never said instead of placing the anger at her son, that's fine. Except I'm not sticking around to play that role. My resume is full and I don't need the credit. Instances like this have been happening to me lately and I have to ask: Even if I did all the trash talking in the world (just saying, for the point of the argument) why shoot the messenger? Why is always easier to blame everyone except the ones that perpetrate the crimes?

Why act like high schoolers and play endless versions of the Blame Game? Or the more popular He Said, She Said? My favorite is Telephone, I believe I wrote about that game last year here. I'll play a round of Pictionary if I am with friends, I'll even play Monopoly with K and D. If the mood strikes I might even dust off the Wii and swing that white stick thing around for a while but I will not play a game where the winner always loses and the loser always wins.

Joshua was right:

The only winning move is not to play.

Friday, January 14, 2011

President Obama's Full Speech at Tucson Memorial



I didn't want to write about this. I don't even like talking about it. It's one thing to disagree, or be angry at the state of things, I get that. Taking a gun and killing innocent people is an act of cowardice that has no place in our society. I've been obsessively following the coverage on the event in Arizona since first what happened:

K and I were on a beach shoot in Santa Barbara, D was relaxing in the hotel. We were texting back and forth, I was telling him how well K was doing when he sent a quick text about a shooting in Arizona. A few minutes later he texted to say that Giffords had been shot in the head and that she was dead. Receiving news briefs via text isn't the best way to get an accurate description of the actual events and no one on set really knew what was happening. After the shoot and back at the hotel we watched in horror as the events of the morning unfolded live on the news, we didn't want to scare K so we turned off the news. We still weren't sure exactly what had happened or why as we got on the road back to home.

When we finally got home K was busy running around the house and we were finally able to see what had happened. It was awful and we felt helpless as we heard the stories from witnesses.

It wasn't until the next day we found out more about the victims. Fighting back the tears while I watched the story of Christina-Taylor Green was difficult. My heart ached for her family who had just lost their angel. That day I held my own a little tighter and let things that usually bother me just go.

This wasn't going to be a long post. I really just wanted to share Obama's speech. I forgot how he sums up everything so perfectly. Watching him speak made me forget about the current state of our political unrest. I saw a man bring together a nation, a divided nation in shock over a shooting that was politically motivated. There were no sides to take here. We were all on the same side. The side of grief.

No matter which way you vote please take a few minutes and watch this if you haven't already.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Intel Visual Life - The Sartorialist



I saw this on Dani Brubaker's blog, she's a photographer that K has worked with many times. Dani is a true artist with an amazing spirit and the ability to get the most gorgeous pictures you have ever seen. K recently did a shoot with her and I was just blown away at the results.

Blogger Scott Schumann's photographs are stunning and the method to his madness is just beautiful. I felt inspired after watching this mini-doc. His words in the opening will be echoing in my head from now on:

"It's almost like going out there and letting yourself fall in love a little bit everyday"

Wow.

I don't know if this resonates with me because I am an amateur blogger and photographer or because it's such an honest way to look at things. Either way it's a great perspective and well worth watching.

Enjoy.

Then go out and fall in love.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Anti-social networking


I love Facebook. This is not news to anyone who knows me or anyone who has read my blog before. I adore posting pictures of K, so much so that friends who have never met her recognize her when they see her in a store window. I love to play FBVJ (Facebook Video Jockey) posting songs that I like when they pop into my head. At times I was a political activist relentlessly posting links to things that I was either fighting like hell for or violently against. I also love making comments on friend's pages and became so accustomed to communicating virtually I sometimes forget which conversations happened online or in real life.

At the start of the new year I vowed to have more face to face and less Facebook. More actual and less virtual communication. So far so good. I started this post on the 5th and now it's the 13th. I guess that gets in the way of writing since I'm not as MAC-attached as I was in the past. It's been nice having lunch with friends, seeing things rather than reading about them. I've even tossed aside my no-going-out-on-a-weekday night to see a friend's band play. Twice! Of course now that school is back I may adhere to that rule. K has a habit of staying up until I get home, not a good mix with a 7AM wake-up.

Last year I hosted a virtual cocktail party and it was amazing. Chatting and drinking with my friends was a blast. I'd love to have a real event like this, I might even set up the iChat for the friends that live across the country. I don't have to be in my sweats on the couch to enjoy my friends. How hard can it be? A trip to BevMo, a quick coat of paint (for me) and about five minutes of vacuuming (for my dirty floor) and voilà, instant party. I might have to use evite or texting to let my guests know but that's minimal use of the computer.

Some Facebook is necessary, being a transplant means you have left all your friends and family behind so I do need to use social networking as a way to share certain things. I hate having to send out individual emails when we get new pictures, although the PIAs (otherwise known as Mother and Mother-In-Law) aren't on Facebook so I do have be inconvenienced sometimes, which I prefer over having to explain exactly why the PIAs cannot be my Facebook friend.

I've also tried to tone down the politicizing because honestly, it just pisses me off. I know that most of my friends are on the same page as me in that area. I have agreed to disagree with the ones that are not. Fueling fires isn't my thing this year.

I will need to get over my fear of missing something, although being surprised isn't necessarily a bad thing. Last year I found out that K had lost out on a commercial when it was posted on an agencies page. It might have been better to just wait and hear it the old fashioned way. Of course finding out that a friend is in labor or pregnant immediately is pretty cool.

It just comes down to finding a proper balance, which is what life is about anyway. When the scale is tipped to one side something is missed.

Here's to all things being equal.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

What Matters Most


This past Sunday after a day lounging on the couch and watching football D and I were discussing the events of the weekend. We were talking about the drama that goes on around us and how nice it would be to live without it. Then I read a group email from an old friend who lives in New York. He was writing to explain his recent lack of communication: back in October his young son, his three and half year old baby boy was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). They were managing the best they could and he wanted us to know what was happening in their lives. He posted a website for friends and family to receive updates and news on Baby D. Immediately the responses flew back. All of us offering prayers and well wishes to our old friend. It's tragic when you hear news of a child who is sick. It's devastating when it's one that you know.

Suddenly the trivial events of our conversation seemed foolish. Wasting energy on drama is, well, wasted energy that can be better served elsewhere. While I was going to write the rest of my resolutions, including the one that I thought was most important, this one needed to come out today. No more energy is to be wasted on things that are not positive. No more fuel will be added to out of control wildfires. Only positive thoughts will flow from this house from now on. While it's easy to get caught up in the negative, it serves no purpose. First infractions will receive a warning, after that serious fines will be given.

Before Christmas I was at Children's Hospital donating platelets for a baby I did not know. The word went on my Parenting Message Board and I made my appointment as soon as I could. Unfortunately my platelet count was too low (which was a little troubling) but I was able to donate blood instead. This was something that I didn't have to think twice about, the needs of a sick baby came before my own comfort (which really isn't an issue, I've donated platelets and blood many, many times.) With all the holiday shopping I did this year, my donation at Children's Hospital was the gift I was most happy to give.

I'm begging you all, for 2011 let it be a year of positivity. We sent out New Year cards with this message:

JOY
PEACE
CHEER
ALL
YEAR

the season is full of precious gifts but none more treasured than love, laughter, family and friends.

peace & love,
dm&k

Every year we sign our cards with peace & love and every year we promise to live that way. This is the year we will follow through with that promise. Just think of what we can accomplish if we shift feelings of hate and fear over a little to peace and love? I want to be in a world where love reigns supreme and peace is universal.

If you want to show support for families dealing with significant health challenges please visit Caring Bridge. If you want to help a sick child contact St. Jude Children's Research Hospital or your local Children's Hospital, in Los Angeles the direct link is here.

Here's to a peaceful and loving New Year!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Resolutionary Wars Part 2



OK, so here's the part where I say all the things I plan to do this year. Please notice that going to the gym is NOT on this list. While I'd love nothing more than to have Katy Perry's body if it means going to the gym every day it's not going to happen. I'd rather starve myself than workout every day. Don't know why either. I just hate it. So in no particular order here are the things I'd love to do/get done in 2011:

1. “Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.” Yeah, yeah. Easy for you to say Mr. President (Thomas Jefferson) I'm sure your household staff made it a bit easier for you to not put off your shit. I know I get bad about procrastination and that's why it's at the top. Please feel free to send me an email (or text or phone call) when I put off stuff. Thanks.

2. Hold your tongue. I like idle chatter as much as the next guy and I can easily get caught up in a coffee klatch. Lately this kind of shit has come back to bite me on the ass and I find that I'm defending myself against words that never came from my mouth. I'm going to keep my mouth shut and ears open, which is what I do anyway but this time more so. It's that or find a good libel attorney.

3. Patience is a virtue. Whatever. So is justice and I never get to see any of that. I know, no need to be bitter. This year, like all the others that have passed, I vow to have more of this elusive virtue. While I have no problem being patient with my seven year old, I find very little patience while dealing with morons on a daily basis which leads me to:

4. Acceptance. I will try to be accepting, even of said morons. I will do my best not to yell at idiots who talk incessantly on their cell phones while driving or checking out at the grocery store. Honestly though, I will try to remember that not everyone thinks like me (lucky for them). Not everyone has the conversation mapped out word for word before it even started. Not everyone was born with the cynical gene that I seem to have been doubly blessed with. I will do my best to take deep cleansing breaths before I offer my opinion.

Really.

5. Bin there, done that. OK, about these bins in my house. This is the year they leave. If I don't get them on Ebay then some lucky kid is about to be blessed with a wardrobe fitting that strange Cruise kid, without the high heels. I did draw the line at that. These bins contain a ridiculous amount of high end designer kid clothes, worth a fortune. Lucky for D (and my Visa card) they were either bought at sample sales or given to K as payment for modeling. I'm not kidding about the fortune either. Currently she has an outfit that retails for $300 in her closet. Thankfully she likes it and has worn it a few times. This was a trade thing and it cost us about 30 minutes of our time. In addition to that she got 2 other outfits which probably cost the same amount. They are hanging in her closet with tags attached as we speak. If only I could wear a size 6!!! Anyway, this is the year I lose the bins and gain valuable space in my house.

6. I'll OCD you later. I joke about this often but it's really not funny. I have started many posts about my OCD but deleted them all. Not because the words didn't align properly (a little OCD humor) but because it's really hard to discuss seriously. Recently Dr. Phil suggested I go on meds to manage this little problem of mine. This bothers me for so many reasons, one of them being my aversion to meds. While I allude to the effects of OCD in therapy I have yet to fully disclose exactly how debilitating it actually can be sometimes. The fact that he mentions meds without knowing how bad it really is makes me think this is something I should consider. It's not just about closing cabinets and making neat little piles of things. It's a deep rooted fear that fills every waking moment with thoughts of disaster. I'll go into detail about this soon. I guess this is a double resolution: I'll work on managing it AND talking about it seriously.

That's it for now. I mean right now. This list is long and I really need to cut it down a bit. If I spend all my time resolving I won't have any time for fun which is another thing I have on my list.

More fun.

Less stress.

No drama.

Let the games begin!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Resolutionary Wars Part 1



OK, so after promising not to neglect my blog, what do I go and do? Honestly it's like the time is slipping through my hands. There are so many things that I meant to write about, fun things, not only complaints.

What I meant to write last year:

Over Thanksgiving I took D and K back home to New York. Of course it's "home" in name only since I have no family there anymore. Seeing my city through the eyes of my family was a strange but wonderful experience for me. Being a tourist in my own city was downright weird. It took about two blocks until I felt like I was home. My old walking stride kicked in and within minutes the decade away had vanished. I was so proud of K who picked up the pace of the city right away. In her black coat and boots she was a mini version of me on a mission to see the next great site. D on the other hand was in full tourist mode and stood in awe of the rich history my city has to offer. Something I never really stopped to notice. While visiting Ground Zero (something I was personally against) D marveled at the architecture and design of some of the oldest churches in the country. I had been down there a million times and never really spent the time taking in what was there.

We did all the touristy things and ate like there was no tomorrow. I was thrilled to be in the land of pizza and bagels and suspended my no carb rule. I also decided not to look at my scale for a while once we got home.

They say you can't go home again and while I understand what makes that statement true I like to add my own version: Why would you want to go home again? I mean you can't go back to the past and even if you could hopefully you aren't the same person you were back then. I have issues with the past but I try to keep them there. Before we left I worried that somehow old feelings would surface. They didn't. What happened was the evolved me returned to the scene of some previous crimes without incident. I didn't venture to the actual crime scene, the trip was too short for that but it didn't matter. I am a grown woman with a child of my own. Even if I stayed in the house where I grew up I doubt it would have done any damage.

It was fitting that we were in NY during Thanksgiving, a holiday I renamed Angstgiving decades ago. Going with D and K this time was almost cleansing and not just because of the usual holiday rain. We created a new memory of the holiday, a forced family celebration was replaced with a casual lets-do-what-we-want kind of day. The traditional turkey dinner was replaced by fine French cuisine (although D did opt for the French version of Turkey Day staples.) We were surrounded by other people who did the same thing. It was perfect. Why don't more people know about this? Holiday dinners without the mess? I have no idea where we will be for these holidays next year but I will be the first to suggest dining out. Besides the way I cook a five star restaurant would actually be cheaper.

I originally came here to discuss my resolutions for 2011, I don't really call them resolutions but for the sake of the title I will here but not today. I'll get to the tomorrow.

and yes, my first one is to do something about my procrastination problem.