What about you?

Ok, Saturday once again and here I am, posting.

..Anyway.

It’s Halloween, which may or may not matter to you, but I think ‘ween is bitchin. Why? Because it always reminds me of being a kid, which is a good thing. Although I get it’s not a good thing for everyone, especially if the things that plagued your childhood included, but were not limited to:

-Childhood acne
-A lack of toys, VHS tapes or a sibling to push around
-Spandex bicycle shorts
-Wetting the bed (you know who you are...)
-Being forced to eat stinky cheese, egg or combo stinky cheese/egg sandwiches at lunch, when all you really wanted was bologna, like all the other kids who also got chips in their lunchbox, but you didn’t because your parents gave you uncool shit, like bananas or apples or plain crackers with no salty bits on the top, because they probably hated you. That’s why.

Anyway, I still love Halloween.

Right now there are kids running up and down my street, totally pumped that they’ll be jacked on sugar tonight. I’m not looking forward to that like, at all. Why? Because most kids are annoying all on their own without having to be high on white, refined sugar, which is sort of like crack, but legal.. and tastes better. Not that I’ve tried crack. Or that I would. But if you have, I won’t judge you. Have you? You can tell me. I won’t tell. I promise.

So I’m typing here and I’m wondering, what do you do when you blog? Are you:

-At a desk
-At the kitchen table (I am, mostly)
-Watching TV
-Talking on the phone
-Listening to music
-Drinking
-Smoking (all things included, don’t hold back. You can tell me.)
-At a coffee shop
-On a laptop
-At an old desktop-you-really-need-to-jump-on-the-Mac-train-already-seriously-what-are-you-waiting-for

???

What do wear, look like, eat, smoke, drink, think, sit on when you blog?

Me. The Mac. Penelope the cat. She's likes getting involved.

Me. The Mac. Penelope. (yes, she really does this when I blog.)

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Married. Without children. You gotta problem with that?

I’m going to start this post by saying two things:

1. I really wish I could post more often these days, but things are hectic lately. I mean really. On top of the usual stuff we all manage to cram our days with, Rob and I are house hunting, I’ve been trying to find a decent pair of decent boots for effing weeks now, and work’s a boar. Rarrrr. (although I don’t think that’s the sound a boar makes, but it must be close.. or similar.. or at least the distant cousin of what a real boar sounds like. But I wouldn’t know, because I’ve never seen a boar. Or eaten one.)

2. I’m adding another item to my List. But I can’t tell you what it is… yet.

And now we return to your regularly scheduled post-

When you’re dating and living apart, people ask, “when are you going to move in together?”

When you’re coupled, sharing an address, bills, and your toothbrush holder, people ask, “when are you going to get engaged?”

When you’re betrothed, the ring is on, and you’re deciding between a wedding in the city or on the beach at sunset with a Mai Tai and a sunburn, people ask, “when are you getting married?”

When you’ve set the date, said the vows, and sent out the last Thank You Card to relatives you probably won’t see again until the next family funeral, people ask, “when are you going to have a baby?”


And that’s where shit gets personal.

I totally get that some people are just you know, curious. Asking questions, making conversation sort of thing. When you’re married, it’s a given that at some point people are going to ask the baby question. I mean “it’s the next step..” right? (if you could see me right now, I’m rolling my eyes, which is a little hard to do while typing, but it’s happening. Somehow. Honest.)  When you haven’t really formulated an answer to that infamous question about baby, or care to right now, it’s the last question you want to hear.

As if I didn’t have enough to worry about with hunting a house, surviving the work week, attacking a List, and finalizing my plans to take over the world, now I have to think about my ovaries, my uterus and a clock. If this all sounds a little bit like being lost in a forest, it sure feels that way some days.

I could really use a few gingerbread crumbs right about now.

How about you – you getting the Q’s about what’s next in your life?

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You plan. God laughs. Part II.

Ok, so it’s Saturday night-ish and I totally get that blogging on a Saturday is like, breaking a cardinal blogging rule. Or something. Word on the street is that people have better things to do than read blogs on a Saturday. But I don’t care, I’m going to post anyway. You know why? Because the mood has struck, and I’m all about blogging while I’m in the mood.  Not “the mood” though, because that’s really none of your business. Or my husband’s. Just kidding.

*****

So I left you with this the other day:

It has absolutely occurred to me that my List is a plan of sorts. A way of creating a path to the things that are important to me. It has absolutely occurred to me that my plan could fail. But I happened to know that there is something more powerful, more intense, more gravitational, more deluxe, and more stupendous than a plan…

*****

How could I do that? And then just leave with a picture of Turkey Bacon ‘n Eggs, just because I like it? Totally off-side. But you came back, and I’m glad you did. I can only hope you feel my answer was worth waiting for. Truth? it’s sort of become the corner-stone of my reinvention (I decided this last night, while drinking. Doesn’t matter). It’s my secret weapon for when [insert higher power here] decides to have at ‘er with my carefully-planned-planned-for plans. So, without further ado, the thing more mighty than a plan is…

Opportunity.

In every failed plan – from the wrong entree, to the wrong job, to the wrong guy/girl, to the wrong opener to your book – there is an opportunity to:

-Test what you are really made of
-Learn how creative your are in the face of disaster or derailment
-Feel how resilient you are
-Use your optimism
-Understand, I mean really get, how badly you want that thing that didn’t go according to plan, because if you want it bad enough, you will find an opportunity to get it

I’m going to start taking my own advice.


Since turning 29 two months ago and beginning to check things off of my “Before I Turn 30 List”, I’ve taken a good look at my life. Here’s what I’ve found:

1. Overall, I have a good life. I’ve seen people who have what most would consider “a shitty life” and you know what? That’s not me. I need to start giving myself credit for the things I have accomplished – it’s the only way to truly know what it is to be successful.

2.Taking a good look at yourself isn’t easy, but it’s always necessary.

3. If you plan to make a List To Change Your Life, be prepared to ask yourself a lot of questions. And then be prepared for the answers. (Bring ice. Sometimes the truth hurts.)

4. I’ve never really failed at anything. That’s not good. Instead, I’ve quit a whole bunch of times and in the process totally short-changed my potential. I failed to see the opportunity at times and now, at 29, I understand that it is far better to fail and get the satisfaction of having had the experience than not trying at all.

5. Regrets = bad news. If you have regrets, chances are you’ve failed to see the opportunity in said situation. Again, I’ve learned this the hard way. Attention 20-somethings!


Opportunity is the thing that lies in between the cracks of failure.

Opportunity bridges the gap between your regrets and your lessons.

Opportunity is greater than the plan.

And [insert higher power here]‘s got nothing on that.

IMG_1030

Lisbon, Portugal. Just because.


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You plan. God laughs.

I’m not a religious person. I even once bartered the baptism of my unborn child for the recovery of lost luggage. I had good shit in those bags worth saving. No regrets.

But this post isn’t about religion. It’s about how God has a way of fucking up your plans sometimes.

***

I planned to be a millionaire.

I planned to know what to do with my life.

I planned to have children by now.

I planned to have met, made out with, and dumped at least one celebrity. Potentially two.

I planned to been famous. Or at least recognized in the grocery store because my face is on the cover of a trashy tabloid. Dreamy.

I planned a lot of things that just didn’t work out the way I planned.

Should I be disappointed? Pissed? Discouraged? Probably.

****

It has absolutely occurred to me that my List is a plan of sorts. A way of creating a path to the things that are important to me. It has absolutely occurred to me that my plan could fail. But I happened to know that there is something more powerful, more intense, more gravitational, more deluxe, and more stupendous than a plan…

[to be continued. just because.]

Turkey bacon n' eggs. Just because.

Turkey bacon n' eggs. Just because.

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Sisters. Let’s discuss.

Mine was a request to my parents at the tender age of four. Hanging out with mom and dad was ok, but they could only pretend to enjoy tea party for so long and I, quite frankly, was beginning to tire of being handed the usual napkin and ball point pen to “doodle on” while wasting my tender youth at yet another fancy restaurant with mom, dad and company.

So.

She came to us on a cool day in April. I named her after my favorite soap opera character – the prettiest one. Naturally.

Things went smoothly for a while, but then she started to talk. Ask for things. This posed a problem since I wasn’t keen on having her do things like ask for my beloved toys or tattle when I pinched her cheeks, which was often, that’s for sure. But since that cool day in April, when she took up residence in the room next to mine, I can’t remember the last time I felt alone, which feels like a pretty good trade-off for a few Barbie dolls and the occasional grounding from mom for cheek pinching.

I’ll spare you the details of how our five-year age difference felt more like a 100-year gap at times. Hair pulling, clothes stealing, food throwing, phone-call eavesdropping, attention hoarding, and screaming matches refereed by dad. There were days I wished I was alone, like that lucky “only child” who sat next to me in French class who never worried about her sister wearing her barely-out-of-the-box shoes or newly bought baggy jeans.

I would spend the better part of my teenage life kicking my sister out of my bedroom.

Until the day I let her in.

It would be less than one year before our family split apart, waking up one day to learn that dad’s clothes weren’t on his side of the closet anymore. But don’t dwell on the sad bit, because this isn’t a story about heartbreak. It’s a story about love.

I could hear my sister crying in her bedroom, just a few feet from mine, and my heart hurt like it never had before. All these years I hadn’t noticed there was a young woman growing up next to me, sharing my history and now about to be the one person who would understand a future of Sunday mornings and holidays without dad.

It didn’t take much that day for me to open the door to my bedroom, what surely seemed like a fortress most days, and let my sister in. We sat on my bed for hours, just being sisters, drowning out the argument happening between the two people we loved the most, watching reruns of sitcoms and infomercials about sandwich machines.

That was the day I learned to love my sister.

And this is how she loves me back-

There are two things that will happen when you tell your sister you’ve fallen in love:

She will tell you how happy she is, and feel it.

She will tell you how pretty you look in love, and mean it.


There are two things your sister will do when you walk down the aisle:

She will watch every step you take, and remember it.

She will cry more than you, and hold your mom’s hand because you can’t.


There are two things that will happen when you tell your sister your life is really hard right now:

She will look you in the eye and remind you all the reasons you are loved, giving you the best advice you have ever heard.

When you ask her how she got to be so strong and learned to impart that kind of wisdom, she will tell you were the one who taught her how.


Now if you don’t have a sister this story doesn’t exclude you, because sisters are not only the women we share mothers with. They are the women who reflect love back to us; they are the ones who make us feel important; they are the ones who cry with us; they are the ones who tell you when you’re truly being ridiculous; they are the ones who understand when you feel so misunderstood.

For me, that woman just happens to be my sister. She is the best thing I ever ask for, and got, from mom and dad.

I’m so glad I let her in.

me ash

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