Thursday, October 19, 2017

Stuck ON


It's funny, how things tend to spring up right when you need them most. This being the case in stumbling upon the series by Amanda De Cadenet, called "The Conversation" which for some crazy reason I'd never heard of before. But was desperately craving. I've always liked Amanda, and this series in particular has rooted my adoration that much deeper.

It's what I've been listening to in the kitchen early morning for the past two weeks, while making lunches and having coffee. I've been feeling newly bored with pod casts and not into music that early in the day so every morning I look forward to putting on a new interview and swear it's been the best way to begin my day. In the familiar company of "girl talk" which is basically what she's embracing here talking intimately about things that matter to all of us, body issues, sex, femininity, depression, careers, motherhood, etc. But in a very real, raw context usually spared in these kinds of Hollywood interviews.

Busy Philipps was the first one I found (and fell in love with) but each and every women offers something unique. Something inspiring. And is certainly proving the best company to my 6am hour. So check it out and let me know what you think.

A few of my favorites 

Jamie King

Connie Britton

Zoe Saldana

Milla Jovoitch 

Lady Gaga 

Hilary Clinton

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Leon in New York

One of the hardest things about having multiple children is maintaining a fair balance of activities to suit everyone. As most can attest, it's rare that everyone in a family shares the same exact interests. Kids are different, personalities vary, and naturally hobbies and intrigue do too. Making sure you don't overlook or neglect individual preferences, it's harder than I expected.

The biggest problem we have is that two of our boys, Arlo and Rex, are most active with common interests being skate boarding and surfing which we are constantly making efforts to get them to to ensure they flourish in areas they love. It means altering our schedule to make it to competitions and play dates, after school sessions and weekend things too. Where Leon often times is merely along for the ride. Easy going as he is, I started to realize recently how much we take for granted his indifference, in that he isn't the kind of kid who is apt to protest or complain, even when it means spending time doing things he doesn't find all that appealing. 

Hence, the trip to New York earlier this month. Just the two of us. A birthday present decided on after he requested a ride on an airplane as his big gift, and we saw an opportunity to show him around a Big City, with my best friend, her wife, and other kin we know on the East Coast to do all the things he loves. Sight seeing, museums, restaurants, gift shops, boat rides and a fair share of the tourist attractions he's always drawn to. Four days fully dedicated to Leon. And only Leon. Seeing the things that interest him, without three brothers to mix or contend with. Which was amazing. And reminded me of how easy it is to forget just how important one on one time is, especially around this age, when there is always so much going on and it's all too easy to forsake. I think, on a whole, the trip reawakened those sentiments in me I had pushed aside due to stress and time constraints and all the other things in life that tend to eat away our better good if in fact we let it. 

As for the sight seeing, we had a blast. Largely in thanks to the friends who came out to ensure we saw incredible things, tasted incredible foods, visited incredible places. And if I can be sure of one thing, it's that New York City loves Leon something fierce. Everywhere we went: gay men, black men, gift shop ladies working registers, Uber drivers, gray haired grannies in the park, they all stopped whatever it was they were doing to engage him. Everywhere we went he was handed small gifts, unique tokens, complements and so, many, genuine smiles. Proving something we've always known, that whatever light he carries inside of him shines through wherever he is. People respond to kindness. And Leon, he's got more of it than most. Apparent, it seems, even in a city that moves a whole lot faster than the rest. 

The whole experience I am thankful for. That we did it. Together. A trip I hope he'll remember forever. One that took him to the rooftop at The Met at sunset to toast that bright city skyline, kept him up late watching Harry Potter movies, and woke to brown bagged bagels for breakfast in the "Liberace Room," and photos booths in fancy hotels downtown, a big boat that drove him around the East River to marvel at the Statue of Liberty (a sight so pretty I couldn't help but get tear eyed during the string of patriotic songs they played while we were parked) and museum runs, candy shops, cab rides, and a park picnic with a school full of kids he didn't know but befriended anyway. A first taste of a bustling scene so different from the slow roll of this surf town we're in now. A good time. All attention paid to just him. And all the things that make him the happiest. 

What we saw / did / ate

Lunch at Breslin in The Ace
Natural History Museum
Drinks on the roof of the Met
Dinner at Mediterranean

911 Memorial Museum
Statue of Liberty / East River Boat Cruise
Economy Candy
Lunch at Spitzers
Maria Berrio exhibit at Praxis
Dinner on the river on the cutest 1930's sailboat called "Pilot"

Friday, October 13, 2017


Living in this perfectly simple white jumpsuit.

Dreading the next phase of renovation. Busting all the flooring out, down to the dirt to repour portions of the foundation before new flooring can even be considered. And new flooring is all I think about.

Watching and loving (despite dim online reviews) Gypsy with Naomi Watts on Netflix. Because I'll take all the dismal suburban dramas, all of the time.

Loving this incredible little projector on Amazon that allows us to watch movies on the (many) bare walls of this house until we reconfigure the whole TV situation here.

Drafting visions of an all plaster bathroom to most practically accommodate a house full of five boys that will allow it to be sprayed down with a hose, because this is where we're at in life right now.

Obsessing over Terrace Conran interiors. I bought a few books online and have been referring to them regularly for fresh kitchen inspo.

Feeling guilty about and therefore trying to work on the modern issue we're all guilty of: "phubbing"

Reading up on five ways to reduce gun violence in America

Saving this to read by the pool (in peace) later this weekend

Praising the latest endeavor from Airbnb - A travel magazine dedicated to "human stories from around the globe, infused with local flavor." And just as amazing as you'd guess. 

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Scenes From A Weekend / Lake Arrowhead

Same spot, same crew, same date every year to welcome the start of Fall.

A short weekend parked under the shadowy blanket of treeline, relaxing by the river, catching fish, chasing ducks, eating chili and downing mint & tequila while watching a bunch of kids filthy themselves with mud, paint, soot and ketchup.

Here's to you, sweet October.