Then And Now

 Last weekend we got to me little Otto for the first time and he is such a babe with some serious hair going on! I love to see the pictures next to each other (remember the first one?). It really shows how much good can grace our lives in such a short amount of time.

My Day With The Dalai Lama

I'm not sure how to describe what I witnessed yesterday when I went to see the Dalai Lama with my best girl Melissa. I had spent the months prior to the experience anticipating the day and hoping that it would shed some light and give me some sort of tool or perspective to guide me through the heart wrenching events that we have gone through recently. I longed to hear something that was going to transform my current state of emotional limbo into something that I could view as greater than me and walk away transformed. Silly me. Such is life right? Never expect too much. I already knew that, duh! That in itself makes me laugh, and laughter, I have found is the best medicine around. That shit is free folks!

The morning that started at 5:15 when I rose started something like this.... wake groggily, shower and get ready, pick Melissa up at 7 am, drive to the shuttle location, shuttle, arrive, view the vast amount (12,000) of people there to witness the event, sort of in awe at how diverse the crowd was, shove a power bar in my hungry mouth, people watch beyond belief, go through metal detectors and have purse searched, make our way to our seat, realize that we have the worst seats ever, grateful that I even have a seat to begin with, play stupid games on Iphone with Meliss right next to me and laugh my ass off, feel grateful that she is my friend, wait 1 1/2 hours for event to begin, watch the pre-show Indian dancing, think how heavy their costumes are and wonder if they are happy to be doing so at 8 am, realize my intense back pain due to bench seating. And then, like the clouds had parted and life could begin, HE emerged!! The man, THE ONE human that I have always wanted to hear speak in person was in front of me. I was calm and present.

As soon as he started talking, my ears and my heart were wide open. I listened, and listened. And then.... I realized that I had a really hard time understanding what he was saying! OH NO, this couldn't be happening!!! I leaned closer, that didn't help, I turned my head, ear to the front, no go! I have seen him speak before on television and didn't have such a hard time trying to decipher what he was saying through his accent, so why? Why now? I was ready and needed it! None of this helped. I saw Melissa writing down notes in her notebook which made me wonder (and giggle to myself) , " Do you speak Dalai Lama?"  Not until my bench seating neighbor leaned over after a half hour and asked " Please tell me that I am not the only one who cannot understand him" was I able to see the humour in it. With no disrespect to him do I say this at all, especially because I was raised with a father and grandparents that English is their second language, I just found it very difficult. I blame it on the microphones and vast amount of people there, or possibly the hum of spiritual vibration that was too overpowering for me to hear through. All in all, I am happy that I was in the same room as him, it was grand.

 I spent time last evening scouring the internet and found bits and pieces of his words from the event. I realized once again that even though I didn't hear everything he was saying at moments, everything he spoke of is already in me. It always is. I thought that I needed him to tell me (once again), but it is always there, and always will be. I just need to be mindful and present to hear it clearly.

Have a wonderful and present weekend. I plan to do the same. xo


Palm Springs Wedding

I have a little thing for weddings, I can't help myself, I love them. So, you can imagine how happy I was to be able to attend this one in one of my favorite places and with a couple that I think is just so perfect for each other. I wish I took more pictures but I was actually just enjoying myself and taking it all in. The location was awesome and the weather out there couldn't have been more perfect the whole time. To spend a weekend catching up with beloved friends from LA and soak up the sun was so relaxing and so very needed. The thought of leaving the day we were supposed to was such a bummer that we extended our stay and got more time in at the pool and a visit with our bff in Joshua Tree. Every time I leave there I try to conceive of how I can live there part time. One can dream right?


Between The Storms

For the past two weeks we have been adjusting to our new life as empty nesters. Spending as much time with friends, and the littles as possible. Nothing cures a broken heart as much as hearing the laughter of the little people we call friends. Enjoying a rainy day at the beach with my favorite person doesn't hurt either. Two weekends ago we set off for the beach and to Alex's favorite surf spots to get out and breathe the cold crisp air. Between the rain storms we were able to venture and explore a bit, it was a such beautiful day. 


RIP Haiku

Last tuesday we lost the most amazing creature known to man, our sweet,sweet Haiku. That furry old lady we speak of often.You know her right? As I type this, my eyes well up with tears. Somehow through the intensely shattering experience that particular day, I shed few.

I myself have decided not to bear children of my own. A choice that is always greeted with "the look" that could sink a thousand ships. I feel now that this experience has made me realize that without a human child, I am still a mother. As a very dear friend pointed out to me recently, I raised my dog from the time I was barely out of high school, living on my own, into adulthood. I never gave her up when an apartment I was seeeking at the time didn't take pets. We figured it out, that was never an option. We were home to each other. As I have stated before, we made our way together. She and I, my friend. 

I believe that at the end, which was peaceful and still so unbelievably painful and surreal that I didn't shed those tears until after I was able to guide my baby through and onto what was next for her. In that moment, and still days later I feel that I have learned so much about compassion and grace. I was her mother, yet she taught me so much about myself and probably will continue to do so.

RIP Haiku 1996-2012. Such a damn trooper she was, 16 years old. A wise woman for sure. We will love and miss her forever.


The Civil Wars

I am pretty obsessed with this band after seeing them on the Grammy's recently. If you know me well, then you know that I have a super sweet spot for old country music and this band really does it for me. By no means are they an "old" band but they have the heart of one. Seriously. My crazy self spent the last hour seaching for videos of them and the only thing I came up with is how cool, and down to earth I think they are.


Life Is A Park

We have been spending a lot of time in parks lately. This little one of ours has been enjoying it tremendously. Rolling around, getting loose, and enjoying every last minute with us.

It really is the little moments that mean the most.


The Littles

 There have been many celebratory events for the littles of late. First was Mila's second birthday party two weekends ago. I crafted, two words I never thought I would say. Against my better judgement and since it was a bumble bee theme I made a flower crown with bees. That little thing didn't last a minute before it was taking twists and turns at the hand of the birthday girl herself. I'm so naive, I thought I could get at least one solid picture of her in it. Nope! Not a chance.

The following weekend we celebrated Lolli's third birthday. It was an art party and the littles got down. It was so fun that now I want one for my own birthday this year. Sort of joking but not really. It was strategic trying to stray far enough away from their little messy hands. Some were not so lucky.

I also want to say a huge congratulations to my friends who I visited recently in San Jose. On Tuesday morning, just before noon, they welcomed their son Otto into this world!!! He is a really cute one! You know those ones right? Cute babies. Yeah, he's one of those. I am looking forward to meeting him in person and adding another little to the expanding crew.


Recipe Love: Mushroom Casserole

I really love mushrooms, so much so that when I'm dining out I always try to find dishes that incorporate them. Almost always. So while looking through old posts of deliciousness on 101 Cookbooks, I found this recipe that has fast become a staple of satisfaction in our house.

The recipe is simple which is the first thing that got me. It also has great flavor and as Heidi stated, it is really something that you can transform into other flavor combinations really easily. If you stick to the bare bones of the recipe, you can interchange all the ingredients to suit your mood. I have made a mexican version by simply using black beans, fresh corn, red onions, mexican cheese, and a garnish of cilantro. It is also such a transitional dish that it is great for breakfast, sort of like a quiche. Alex always eats the leftovers with a fried egg in the morning because that man without eggs is a sad, sad man.

photo: 101 cookbooks


Just A Thought

Just a couple photos I found from a day at the Deer Park Monastery sometime last year. I may or may not have posted them before but one needs a little reminder now and then. You know?


Blacks Beach View

One of the best things of living in our city that I personally take for granted at moments are the gorgeous spots to take in a sunset. This of course is never lost on Alex. Not for a second. Watching my husband stare out at his other home is a really peaceful and beautiful thing to watch. Big waves or not, he embraces that ocean with his whole heart. That sort of love is inspiring.


A Visit With Friends

Sometimes all you need is good old fashioned girl time (and you too Axel) to put you back in place. Last weekend I flew with a great friend and one of the most amazing toddler travel partners of all time to San Jose to visit friends who are expecting a little one of their own in less than four weeks!! I have to say that the speed of someone being so pregnant was exactly the speed I was willing to embrace right now. It was perfect to relax and spend time with friends I consider family. So many years and experiences under our belts and we are still in each others lives. None of it was lost on me, the whole trip I kept thinking how grateful I am for these beautiful women in my life.

Early mornings spent by myself in their comforting home, a walk by the beach of Half Moon Bay, way too much tasty food, and evenings spent catching up and reliving our almost 20 years as friends. It was time well spent.