Wednesday, November 30, 2011


Last night you gave me
A tiny silver key.  To
You I give my heart.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Workout fun

Over the summer I found this great online resource for FREE, high quality pilates video workouts.  I was inspired to do this by the below-mentioned now-married best friend, who literally transformed her body in the 9 months leading up to her wedding.  So I was majorly  motivated & excited to see what I could do for myself.

Even more fun, Cassey {the blog owner & creatrice} has just designed a 3 month workout & eating plan, based on a body shred she did about a year ago.  It looks awesome!  I'm joining the challenge, & invite you to come along!  Her workouts are fun, upbeat, medically sound, & feel so good.  She builds the warmup for each exercise around the beginner, then adds modifications for intermediate & advanced people.  There is something for EVERYONE!!!!  Come one, come all

{And if all goes well, perhaps I'll even post a bikini pic like Cassey did after her body shred.  No promises though!!!}

Monday, October 24, 2011

So much to update!

My birthday - AWESOME!!!

Best friend getting married - AWESOME!!!

Getting on track, financially, studiously, healthily - AWESOME!!!

Planning for Thanksgiving - AWESOME!!!

Rock 'n Roll!  Let's go.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


Sad news.

Bad news.

UPDATE:  And I got a parking ticket today!  They changed the time limit rules apparently....curses!

Woe is me.


Thanks for letting me kvetch.  Now - onward!

{Tomorrow is my birthday!!!!!!!}

Friday, September 30, 2011

Fall is here

Someone left this pretty bunch of fall flowers on my car this morning! Whoever you are, thank you! xx

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Summer 2011 was great. Really great.

Sometimes, things get so busy & it's just so easy to fall into that old familiar rut of eating dinner on the couch, watching yet another episode of NCIS, & getting up to realize you've done absolutely nothing that week.

Well this year, we were bound & determined to have a damn good summer!  We made a very prominent to-do list displayed in our dining room.  Friends would periodically stop by to check the lists - so funny!  And look at us, we achieved nearly every single one.  I'd say that deserves a round of applause.

*The list for Fall is currently under composition - any suggestions? 
Besides some TECHNOLOGY lessons?!?!  Stupid upside down pictures!*

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Hey y'all

I became a minister today.

What'd you do?

Sunday, September 11, 2011

September 11, 2001

I was wearing khaki pants, a blue & white striped polo shirt, and brown leather sandals. I was a little chilly when I stepped outside, but in the good way - it was early, it was a fresh day. Everyone always says that it was the most beautiful morning, & it really was - bright, sunny, cool, crisp.  Everyone tells you this because it was true.  The bus driver, my fellow students, my professor - everyone commented that morning.

I remember that my new roommate, Amy, that her birthday was Sept. 11.  I had registered to take an 8:00am econ class, & she was asleep when I left the dorm.  I left her a card on her desk.

I lived downtown at 2 Water Street, about 4 blocks from the World Trade Center complex.  In order to get up to campus, we took a shuttle bus up through the Financial District, Chinatown, and the West Village before getting off the bus outside 721 Broadway.  I think it was the second week of school, & I'd already decided that this econ class (& the 8:00am class time) weren't a good fit for me at this time, & I'd secured a drop form from one of the Directors of the Tisch School of the Arts, David Stark.  He was the Director of the Tisch Scholars program, of which I was fortunate to be a part.  I needed to attend my class one last time to secure my professor's signature.  I sat through class, then got the necessary signature, rode the elevator downstairs, and walked across the street to the NYU bookstore to return my econ book & pick up something else, I cannot remember what.  It was probably a theater book - that was my major & I was scheduled to take a theatrical review class that semester, where we would attend shows weekly & write reviews.  After I stood in the short line, I approached the checkout counter.  It was the first station on the right (or the last, depending on which way you count).  As the woman working checked me out, she asked what I thought about the plane accident.  I didn't know what she was talking about, & she told me that a plane had hit the World Trade Center.  She said the news was saying that they thought it was maybe a small, independent plane that had flown too low & accidentally hit the tower.  I expressed my surprise to her, we finished the transaction, & I left the bookstore.  Back then the bookstore was located on Washington Place.

As I walked out, for some reason I turned to my left.  My bus was to the right, the gym was to the right, my boyfriend's apartment was to the right, Tisch was to my right, breakfast was to my right. Why I turned left, I do not know.  After a few steps, I found myself on the corner of Greene Street & Washington Place.  As I looked up, I realized I could see the two towers.  They seemed so close, their 110 stories.  I later calcuated that they were a mile & a half away.  In New York though,  you can walk everywhere, & a mile is only about 40 short blocks.  Even at that distance, the towers were so tall that you were almost looking directly straight up.  I craned my neck to look up & I saw that the towers were spewing smoke.  There were about 8 people around me, & everyone was quietly talking in disbelief.  We stood & stared for about 30 seconds.  Then as if in slow motion, the tower seemed to gracefully sink.  The first few seconds were in slow motion, like I was watching a movie.  I was stuck, utterly glued to the ground, transfixed by this horrible vision happening before my eyes.  Once the sensation of slow motion left, then everything sped up.  That tower fell in about 2 seconds.  It looked like it was going to swallow up everything in its wake, including me & these people I was standing with.   Looking back, there was no way that it could fall on us, suck us up into the debris cloud, but at the moment, it absolutely felt that way.  Our little group started to scream & scattered up the street, running for our lives. 

I ran over to Broadway & stood in the doorway of 721, the Tisch building.  As I stood there, David Stark, my beloved director, ran out of the building.  I screamed his name, & he ran over.  He asked if I was ok, & I told him I had seen one of the towers fall down.  He took my shoulders & shook me, asking if I was sure.  I said, yes I'm sure, I saw it fall.  Then, stupidly, I told him that my professor had signed the paper & I would send it up to his office to file the schedule change.  He must have thought I was such an idiot in that moment.  He asked if I had somewhere safe to go.  I said yes, I was going to my boyfriend's apartment, who he knew.  He asked which building it was, & told me get there as fast as possible.  He hugged me & then we took off running in opposite directions. 

I tried to make some phone calls from my cell phone, but nothing would go through.  I called my mom, dad, boyfriend, over & over & over.  Nothing would go through.  The cell towers had been at the top of the towers, & of course by this time were both destroyed.

I ran to Broadway, on 8th Street, & then I ran up to 11th Street.  There were so many people walking up the streets, & that was when I started to hear the sirens.  So, so, so many sirens.  When I made it into the Third North building lobby, I recognized the lady security guard.  I spent a lot of time in this building & had lived there the year before.  I said I couldn't get my boyfriend on the phone to clear me to go up to his apartment, but could I please go up anyway?  She looked at me like I was speaking in a foreign language.  I don't know if I was screaming, or whispering, or even talking out loud at all.  After a few moments, she told me to go up.  He lived on the second floor & I ran up the stairs as fast as possible, ran to his door, & started screaming & pounding on the door.  After a moment of this, the door opened.  It was his roommate, Joe.  Joe gave me a huge hug & pulled me into the living room.  I don't know what time it was at this point, maybe 10?  10:30?  He said that my boyfriend had tried to call me, couldn't get through, & had gone to look for me.  I have no idea where he had gone - did he know my schedule & had he gone to the main campus?  He didn't like going to my dorm because it was so far downtown, but had he gone there to look?  I still don't know.  My phone still wasn't working, & I couldn't get through to anyone.  We didn't have any landline phones & didn't think about using a pay phone. 

After some time had passed, mostly in silence & shock, Joe said he wanted to go out to look for my boyfriend (& his best friend).  I didn't want to leave, I said it didn't make sense for us all to be looking for each other, & that I should stay here, but he wouldn't let me stay in the dorm by myself.  I think at this point it was about 11:30 or 12 noon.  Joe suggested walking downtown to see what had happened - because we still had no idea.  We didn't even know that the 2nd tower had fallen.  I remember walking down West Broadway, past the big Anthropologie, & past all the shops I loved to walk by.  There were lots of people walking up the streets, & we were walking down.  Multiple people told us to turn around but Joe wanted to keep going.  While I am now very familiar with the streets downtown, at this time, I had no idea where we were.  I think that we walked down West Broadway to maybe Broome Street, then somehow got over on Canal Street.  We walked down Greenwich Street for a while, past an empty school playground.  We finally made it over to the West Side Highway, which was filled with people.  As we looked down the expanse of the highway, we could see the billowing piles of smoke spewing from the ground ahead of us.  I finally convinced Joe that we didn't need to go any further, that we could sit & watch from here.  We sat on the side of the highway for a long time.  The people around us were standing, sitting, talking.  Everyone was saying that the cell phones weren't working, but I kept trying anyway.  Joe was taking pictures of the smoke & asked me to take his picture with the smoke in the background, which I thought was the most stupid thing - who would want a picture of that?? - but I did it anyway.  We must have sat there for hours, & we were starting to get sunburned, so I convinced Joe that we needed to go back.  I said that eventually my boyfriend would come home, & we should be there when he got back.  We slowly picked our way back the way we had come, with rubble blowing in the streets, & people walking slowly all around us.  We finally made it back to the dorm about 3:30.  No one was there.  I sat at the kitchen table & Joe turned on the news.  They kept showing the planes hitting the towers & the towers collapsing over & over & over.  It was sickening.  At 3:45 the door flew open & my boyfriend ran into the room & we crashed into each other, hugging so hard that we almost fell over.  He cried that he hadn't been able to find me, & I cried, & Joe cried.  We knew that our families still had no idea where we were or if we were safe.  None of the phones would work.  For some reason, our NYU emails weren't working.  We all set up new email accounts on hotmail & sent emails to our families. 

Later that night, the news started saying that a group named Al-Qaeda was taking responsibility.  The boys were totally transfixed by the news, but I wanted none of the information.  I don't really remember much else from that evening.  The next day, I woke up to find out that a blockade had been set up at 14th Street.  My boyfriend had crossed the blockade to go to Walgreens to buy me a contact case & a toothbrush.  Our NYU emails started working again, & we were told classes were cancelled, my dorm was closed until further notice, etc.  My mom, aunt, & grandma were all in California because my grandpa was having surgery on 9/12.  I was supposed to fly out on 9/12.  From NYC to LA.  What if my flight had been one day earlier?  I can't even think about it. 

That day, rumors started that the gas leaking was toxic, & we needed to find gas masks.  All the bigger stores were uptown but we weren't allowed to cross the blockade.  We finally found some masks at an arts store in the East Village.  We slept in the masks that night.  The next few days passed in a haze, the blockade was eventually lifted because we went to Bloomingdales to purchase some clothes for me.  Luckily, my aunt had set me up with an emergency credit card, & I am so grateful for that.  My boyfriend, Joe, & I didn't leave each other's sight for at least 5 days, we went everywhere, & did everything together.  None of us wanted to be alone. 

Eventually, because all the airplanes were grounded, my mom ended up taking an Amtrak train from Palm Spring, CA back to Columbus, OH.  I think by day 6 planes were flying again, & my mom was on one of the first planes to come back to the city.  She came, cooked for us, did my 6 pieces of laundry, & comforted all of us.  She, Joe, & my boyfriend went down to the newly-named Ground Zero.  I would not go. 

For years, I would not, could not look at pictures, watch the coverage, read the newspaper articles.  I didn't have any capability of dealing with it.  I would get furiously angry at anyone who asked me about it, & didn't react well in those situations.  I wouldn't talk about it, & forbid anyone around me from talking about it. 

But what good did that do?  Our world changed that day.  We all lost our innocence & the world became a big, scary place.  Even though I wasn't scared to fly, or scared of my cab drivers, or my muslim friends, & I wasn't even scared to by in New York, things changed.  I lost some of my emotional freedom that day.  I lost some of my confidence.  I started to waver & falter.  I lost some enthusiasm, which was replaced with grit & determination.  I gained some hardness, a shell that continued to grow around me.  Don't get me wrong, grit & determination are important.  But so is confidence, enthusiasm, & a personal sense of ease.  The last ten years have been very hard for me, not just because of September 11, but for many reasons.  Over the last few weeks, I've realized that I've never let any of this out, never let any of it go.  There were so many people affected by this terrible day, I never wanted to make it about me.  So many people lost loved ones.  I didn't personally know anyone.  I know many people who did.  I felt like I didn't quite have the right to have my own feelings about what had happened. 

Today is the very first day I have ever watched the memorial coverage.  It is incredibly surreal to see those images again.  The shock of watching the towers fall is the same as it was 10 years ago.  I can still feel the rushing air around me, & hear the screams & the sirens.  But I saw today I also saw the beautiful memorial in Shanksville, PA.  I saw the beautiful fountains at Ground Zero.  I cried.  I have unzipped my heart & let these things fall out.  I will never be the same.  No one will ever be the same. 

Remember, remember, that day in September.  But live your life, don't let your life pass you by.  Live with zest, gusto, & freedom.  That is what we need to do. 

Friday, August 19, 2011

I leave for LA in 7 hours!!!

It feels like Christmas eve!!!!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Stop being afraid to speak your mind. But consider why & to whom you speak, & consider her journey as well.

I did something today that I've never done before.  I left a comment on someone's blog post that was critical.  I feel badly for being negative to someone, & if I hurt this person's feelings.   This person responded with a post, which surprised me, but not surprisingly, it said exactly what I expected it would say.  She's right, there are plenty of other blogs that I can read & find more inspiring.  I hope she feels better for posting and defending herself. 
It didn't start out as a larger life lesson experience, but the more I thought about it, the larger it became.  For me, I spoke up when I disagreed with something.  It's the first time I've ever done that.  I wasn't unkind, rude, or mean, I just simply stated a disagreement.  The other day a friend & I were discussing the idea of selfishness vs. selflessness.  I realize that for the last 5+ years I have not spoken up for myself, said "no, please pay attention to me", or even disagreed with anyone.  I wasn't searching for someone or something to disagree with.  I didn't much consider sending the comment.  Perhaps it was rash.  Testing boundaries is an important part of finding said boundary.  I despise being the method through which other people are refined, or have a growing experience.  I feel badly that this person served that purpose for me, and I apologize.  I learned 2 important lessons today.  Stop being afraid to speak your mind.  But consider why & to whom you speak, & consider her journey as well.

Boobear, this is for you

Monday, August 15, 2011

So back in April I went to NYC & saw some of my people...

& here is one of them!  Better late posting than never.  :)

Hey look, my picture is sitting up straight!! 

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Who am I?

Take a good look at that little curly brown headed muffin.  That smile, those eyes twinkling, feet dancing, totally free & so happy to be with dancing with her cousin.

Where did that girl go?

When is the last time I was truly free & happy?  Was it before I stopped liking the way I look in pictures, or when I stopped talking in class because I felt like the boys were smarter?  Was it when I felt ashamed of my body?  Was it when I started stifling what I wanted because I wasn't sure how other people would feel about it?

I think maybe I was 9.  When I was 6, 7, 8, 9, I was so happy.  I was smart, loved school, thought I was pretty, thought I could do anything, wanted to do my best, felt confident that I could do a great job, felt confident that I mattered. 

And now?  Where along the way do we get ideas that maybe we aren't pretty enough, definitely not thin enough, that thing I said in class was really lame, & why do I think I matter???  High school?  Maybe.

Wwhat if I said to myself, just take one step.  Let's read a book.  Let's pray to become stronger.  Let's make the choice & decide that I do matter.  In doing so, let's realize that I am the only one who can decide for myself that I do matter. 

If I can do that, what else can I do?

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Sunday, August 7, 2011

It takes courage to grow up & become who you really are

Post title is by E.E. Cummings, by the way.

So here's the thing.  This online diary is taking a turn for the honest.  I've dipped my toe in the pool before, but now maybe it'll sometimes be like teeth-gritting, wince-inducing honest.  Hopefully not all the time, because being honest can be fun & playful & delightful & pretty as often as it can be awkward & scrunchy & twitchy...but honestly, I'm just not willing to be less than honest anymore -  with myself and the universe about what I'm doing, who I am, & who I want to become.  I don't know a lot of things, but I do know that we become our thoughts, & our thoughts become our actions; therefore, thinking & acting non-truthfully does a girl a rather large disservice.  It's like pulling a prank on yourself.  If there's one thing I dislike it's a prank, so therefore, I shouldn't be in the business of pranking myself. 

All I want to do is write my screenplays, find film projects to produce, finish graduate school, & then start my own production company.  Not in New York or LA but here in New Orleans.  Because no one else is doing it.  That's all I want to want to do. 

My mom & dad keep a poem on our refridgerator.  Invictus.   "I am the Master of my destiny & the Captain of my soul."

No one will make my dreams come true but me.  No one else can do the hard work.  No one else can do the time.  No one else can take my pain, feel my triumph, keep me going, demand more - no one can do that for me except me.  After years of struggling to understand this, I've finally found the inside of myself that will rise up, be strong, have courage, make decisions, & walk her own pathway.

Who doesn't love instant gratification?  I sure do.  Ohhhh I love it so much.  Grad school is like total instant gratification...haha it's opposite day.  Grad school is the polar opposite of instant gratification.  I feel like I've been stuck in the same place for-EV-ER.  It has been 2 years.  I have another year left.  It's been a long, hard, road & there is plenty of road to travel still. 

As the farmers say, you reap what you sow.  I am spending my time sowing.  SOWING IS HARD WORK!!!  It's hard!!!!!

Take a deep breath & repeat after me:

It's supposed to be hard.
If it weren't hard, everyone would do it.
The HARD is what makes it great.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Royal moments

{Pictures taken from all over}

For the amazing world event known as The Wedding of the Century, Gigi & I decided that we must celebrate the moment in style.  Since I was going to be in New York for work, I found a ticket that allowed me to stay through the weekend (& was cheaper!) & invited my mom to join me in the city for the night.  I decided that we had to swank it up for this night so I booked us a room at the Waldorf Astoria.  Thank you, Hilton rewards point!!  The room was absolutely scrumptious.  Two giant fluffy, feathery queen beds, pink & blue paisley carpet, a view of St. Patrick's Cathedral, a deep sunken bathtub, big fluffy bathrobes...oh I could go on & on.  It was seriously amazing. 

More pictures to come, if I ever get them loaded.  Again, no idea why I can't rotate these pictures appropriately. 

My amethyst fascinator is peeking out the top of the photos!

I have to say, I seriously was looking forward to this day more than I do my own {future} wedding day. To me, this is real-life proof-positive in the pudding that sometimes, not often, but sometimes, fairy tales can come true. In my heart of hearts, where it is still soft & un-cynical, are my hopes that the wildest of dreams can come true, that true love can conquer all, & that I can find the courage to be who I want to be.

Friday, August 5, 2011

This will be a lovely, lovely city summer weekend.

After my outstanding week in San Francisco & Napa, this has been one of those weeks, with a million things to do, eyes full of sandpaper, exams to be studied for & aced & somehow I made it through.  I'm currently in the air (love the online wifi!) on my way to NYC to soak in a few days of city glitter with friends.  I have a new Lilly dress for the occasion!  These last few weeks of summer are always wistful & dreamy, although to be fair, it'll feel like summer in the South until well into October, so perhaps I should just keep scooting along in my sunshine haze with house beautiful DIY projects, school fun to prep for, & always looking for extra ways to do well at work.