William Blake said “A truth that’s told with bad intent beats all the lies you can invent.” I don’t believe any truth should be told with bad intent, but intent to clear a path for revealing deceit.
I have always had a sharp tongue. My philosophy is that people should always be aware of where you stand, otherwise you will lose your place. Sometimes a blessing and sometimes a curse, my intuition holds very strong. I rarely offer my thoughts, rather wait for them to be requested though provocation can sometimes be an intimidating visitor.
With a role bearing some authority and standing it is my responsibility to choose my words wisely, a task that proves more difficult than imagined. I have always had the freedom to let my words flow through my fingertips, but as it turns out people are incredibly sensitive - especially to the truth.
Few to none accept any responsibility for their actions. We live in a society where so much is taken for granted. People lie to get what they want, to intentionally hurt people and then expect pity. Well, the ‘woe is me’ act is far beyond it’s expiration date.
I was taught to take life seriously, but to have fun while doing so. I read that “some say you only live once, but really you live every day and only die once so make the best of it.” That speaks a lot of truth. Do you really want to look back on your life, realize the reason you were so miserable and lonely was because your entire life was a lie?
I care little what people think of me. I care a lot about what I think of myself. I struggle with confidence, as do many but a lot of that is trying to avoid becoming completely consumed with myself. Confidence is good, cockiness is petulant.
I come from old roots. Those roots are pretty grounded, but as any healthy one does - they grow, at least some. I am fortunate to have parents, siblings and friends that love and appreciate my individuality. I have a strong sense of commitment to those I love. My thoughts and beliefs are my own and do not reflect any but my own. We all come from somewhere, but we all have a responsibility to grow on our own. We cannot be allowed to place that responsibility on who and what we are from, but upon ourselves because we all have a choice, choices. We choose to take the paths we take. There are and always will be temptations and influences that will try to sway our deepest wants and needs but those of us that stand tall and fight our way through will prove to be most successful in life and love.
As I have said before I am not a ‘political’ person, but I am passionate about the causes closest to my heart. I choose not to say ill of any person and choose to fight for what I believe in.
Like many things in life, people fall prey to the hype, to what’s ‘popular’ and to what is expected of them. I have offended many people in my 30 years, but without intention. It is those who are insecure in their own thoughts, beliefs and actions that take any difference of opinion to another level and make it about themselves. Though, a guilty mind sees what it wants to see …
I have not a guilty mind but a strong conscience. I am emotional at times, but it is only because I care so much for those I love, and for matters close to my heart. Though I am nowhere near perfect (thank goodness) I am thankful for the ability to see so clearly the line between right and wrong. I know when to fight and when to take a step in the other direction. I know who I am, where I am from and though I may not know where exactly my future will take me I know that it is in a direction of hope and good things. I live my life as honestly as I can and it feels good, great. There are no lies, no stories I have to keep fresh in my brain. There are only memories, dreams and love.
Say what you will about me, but doing so will only say more than enough about you.
“You either like me or you don’t. It took me twenty-something years to learn how to love myself, I don’t have that kinda time to convince somebody else.” ~ Daniel Franzese (Bully, Mean Girls)
for the record: they don’t pair well together. not the worst morning, but definitely uncomfortable. i’d like to thank my man friend for his generosity - buying everyone shots of tequila - but in lieu of the aftermath i might just karate chop him later on.
here’s the deal: it’s been like an incredibly whirlwindish month. so much has happened. i had to say goodbye to my fancy little cottage in the pseudo-burbs (holy long story) but moved into a sweet little condo with my bff. [ok other bff’s, cool your shorts. you haven’t been replaced.] i have been working my tail off - literally. it’s like gone. my boobs got published. no lie. i got to see a dear friend from high school for the first time in several years. [hey dest] i experienced atlanta food & wine fest firsthand. went to visit my mom. while there also saw my grandparents and aunt. went to asheville and wined & dined. spent a fortune on my car only to find out the real problem will cost $2,300. made decision to get rid of said car. georgia now thinks her name is ‘no’. had a snake want to murder me dead. met new friends that are cooler than your friends. drank a lot of expensive beer and wine. learned to eat onions - as long as they’re cooked to death. spent time w my beast while he was on hiatus from the big apple. ate nana’a mac & cheese. went dairy-free the next day. baked my bourbon-soaked peach crumble about 7 times. eaten bourbon-soaked peaches. drank bourbon. accidentally flashed someone during a facetime convo. facetimed w bff mel - and no, she was not the recipient of said flash. discovered a new trick on instagram. recited the pledge of allegiance in french [thanks mr. mckee] dreamt about pregnancy. calm down. it wasn’t me. discovered why tv’s shouldn’t be in the bedroom. gave georgia a sister. sort of. realized karma doesn’t work as quickly as i want it to. but it will. i have faith. so y’all watch out - she’s coming. came to terms w the fact that maturity is a choice and people aren’t choosing wisely. respect is a rare jewel. daydreamed about punching a few people in the face. and yes, in my head, violence solved everything. discovered georgia will literally eat anything - styrofoam packing peanuts included. not all pitt bulls are scary. not all people love dogs. weirdos. thought about getting a pocket pet. it’ll happen, just when ga chills out a bit. lost an uncle. said some naughty things. had sunday lunches at cousin’s. played w some of the coolest munchkins ever. hurt my neck jumping on a trampoline. i’m almost 30 - things don’t bend as easily as they did 12 years ago. had asparagus pee. photobombed everyone w an abundance of our darling puppies. woken up in dress from night before [current situation]. missed a lot of people. heard some awesome rumors about myself in a town where I keep a low profile. found a new post-work friday hang spot: the owl. it’s incredible. watermelon old fashioned? yes please. grown to respect and love my bosses even more. they’re awesome people. created some new cocktails. snooped through my roomie’s drawers. given great life advice that i should probably take myself. gosh, there’s just so much. i want to go on, but i have kids that need feeding and more than likely they need to potty.
it’s been real. i’ve missed you. this. getting my groove back.
see you soon.
.. you haven’t slept in 27 hours?
… you drove 10 hours through the night?
.. you’ve consumed two 5-hour energy and one café mocha within said last 10 hours?
well i’ll tell you …
a touch of anger
and complete madness
watching my dog come off of about 23 hours of sleep in the last 27 and immediately fall back asleep is only adding sand the the scratch that is my current state.
1. tender, passionate affection
2. strong personal liking
3. person toward whom love is felt
It seems rather trivial to look to a dictionary to define something that should be felt; defined by the deep-rooted emotion within each of us. We feel it differently. We express it differently.
Love. What is it exactly that drives us to crave such a thing so desperately? That desperation often leads us to false feelings of love, feelings that are closer related to lust. Feelings of discontent. The desire to love eventually takes control and causes us to miss a real opportunity for a true love to find its way.
I have loved, each in their own way. But how do we differentiate the kind of love we feel for say a friend or a relative, a lover? Simply put: we don’t. True love allows us to feel the difference. When I love, I love with my whole heart. Love is not a word or a phrase I take lightly. It’s not a lighthearted greeting, a friendly salutation. Love is everything.
Hopeless romantic or not I respect love. I respect the tradition. I respect the power it can create. The power of emotion and awareness it can awaken.
I spent many years searching for a love that powerful. With a slew of let-downs and turmoil I never gave up hope - though I did finally level with myself, therefore forcing me to be okay with the idea of being alone. Alone because I believe it is better to love yourself wholly than allow someone to love you less than what you truly deserve.
Love is funny. Unpredictable. After a short time living true to my new philosophy, love found me. We found each other. It’s exhilarating, spontaneous, spiritual. It’s honest. No apologies. No boundaries. It’s intoxicating.
It’s worth every heartache and failed attempt - though there is no failure concerning love. Without each and every attempt we wouldn’t know our heart’s truest desire, its undeniable worth.
Love is an idea that few too many are able to see through. Love does prevail. It can always surprise you .. if you let it.
• Trip home to FL to see my people.
• Trip home to CA to see my people.
• Trip anywhere disguised as an actual vacation.
• The new toggle coat and townhouse trench coat from J. Crew.
• Finish the Garden of Eden.
• KitchenAid appliances in Empire Red.
• Delicious food & cake.
• Money never sucks.
• Yoga retreat.
• New bed with new 500+ thread count sheets.
• First Edition copy of Pride & Prejudice.
• A night at the opera.
• A ranch with ponies.
I think I am satisfied with the above listed items.
Such a complex word these days. When exactly did we lose grip of it’s true meaning? When did life get so complicated? And will it ever go back?
I’ve told the story many times .. me, sitting on a beach in a far-off country, watching the sun go down and wishing I could stay there forever. A moment that changed me as a person, after questioning my life and where it was headed. Here I am, 7 years later and so much has changed. I have moved more times than years that have passed, exhausted several relationships, had so many amazing experiences, met so many wonderful people and transitioned into a blossoming new lifestyle - a natural lifestyle.
It is true what they say about time complicating things, but it seems that we are the only ones to blame. We have allowed money, power, greed, technology and ‘accessories’ to life take over. Our needs have been replaced with wants and we really have no idea what self-reliance is.
Thankfully I am coming to terms with the definition of simple and rapidly becoming reacquainted. I have almost hit my 3 week mark as a vegan. Though I did my fair share of research beforehand, it’s only in the past few weeks that I have really begun to grasp on to this clean and natural way of life. I have combined my vegan standards with a macrobiotic plan that is centered around whole grains and vegetables. I have replaced all sugars with agave and brown rice syrup; said “bye bye” to processed foods and nothing that has to be preserved in any way is welcome in the kitchen. Eventually I will be all-organic as well. I grow as much as I can and what I can’t find in the garden or from a local farmer I depend on my neighborhood Whole Foods. God love ‘em. I swear I have never been to another grocer where the staff is always checking in and so knowledgeable about the products they carry. No offense Publix. I mean, you’ll always be in my heart but Whole Foods take the crown in the kingdom of groceries.
I am going a touch off-subject but it’s what I do and I’ll eventually get back .. I made a comment in passing to my dear cousin the other day regarding fruit and how we should only eat what is in season and grown in the climate we live in. She asked me about what I meant and why that is to which I put it this way: Fruits from the tropics wouldn’t be ideal for a body experiencing, say, snow or sleet - as it would cool it off too much. On a really hot day a piece of pineapple would be great, but no fruit from a climate opposite your own is good for every day consumption. I got this from one of my many books, which also notes that fruit should be ‘treats’. Moderation is key. We began to elaborate in conversation and it was understood how that made sense and how funny it is how our bodies do things naturally at times. For instance, in the fall we typically crave hearty stews and soups loaded with autumn veggies while in the summer we think about fruits and grilling - and this was a perfect segway into the topic of simplicity.
We started talking about our Grandmother. She was such an amazing woman. Mother to 8 children, wife for more than 60 years and a grandmother to dozens of grand and great-grandchildren. More than that she was a simple woman. She provided a wonderful life for all who knew her. The most extravagant thing about her was her ability to love. She made her children share rooms and going out to eat was a treat, not because they couldn’t afford it but because quality time together was what made her quality of life last for so many years. My cousin said that “Happiness is in the simplicity of just being and enjoying life and I think she (Grandmother) understood that … maybe many people from that time did.” It’s true.
You hear your parents talk about how life was when they were kids and even now I often think back to when I was a child and how my parents tried to instill in my sister and I the same appreciation of the ‘simple things’. Going out to eat was a treat for us as well. It was usually after church on Sundays. We had a home-cooked meal every night which we ate TOGETHER as a family. My dad would make homemade ice cream with fresh fruit and my sister and I would be so amazed that he could do that. We were content sitting in his lap watching the silly thing churn and we loved to be the one to add the salt or ice, or even to taste test the final product. We were only allowed an hour of tv and we couldn’t wait to get outside and play in the sandbox or on the swingset. Of course things changed, not that it was my parents’ fault just that time changed things.
Time. Silly word. We are always so concerned with time. Being on time; setting the time ahead a few minutes to give ourselves an edge (or so we think); how it goes by so quickly .. so much talk about time. It is inevitable I suppose, but it is indeed time that complicates things. Times changes. When I think of my happiest - truly happy - moments they are of when I am either sitting around with friends, with family sitting down TOGETHER for meals and game nights - even movies, and those moments alone I take for myself whether it be for meditation, music or just some quiet time to think. Of course I want a lot out of life, but I want it to come from doing things I love, like cooking or helping others. Simple makes me happy.
I talk of cooking, and even in cooking our senses have long been deceived with overpowering spices and salts; so much so that we have forgotten how things should taste - just like we have forgotten what quality time together is and getting out and enjoying what the Earth has to offer without paying a fortune for it. Don’t get me wrong I love a good day at a theme park, museum or gallery but I want it to be a treasure like eating out was when I was growing up. I want to put those things back in the category of ‘looking forward to’ instead of the ‘oh yeah, been there done that but I’ll do it again’.
My conservative friends back home give me a hard time for some of the changes I have made in my life and it’s true that part of me has gone a little hippie, but I am happy. I feel that with every move I have made I have lost a lot of things, but they are indeed just things. When I moved back from Los Angeles, I left about 75% of my belongings with a ‘friend’ back West. Long story short, this ‘friend’ took the money I sent for shipping all of my things and ran with it. We are talking jewelry, clothes, shoes, pictures, trinkets, keepsakes and housewares. Like I said though, they were just things. Here I am almost 4 years later, I have no idea where my things are and I am surviving. It makes me sad to think about a few of my treasured things I lost, but there is nothing I can do about it which means I have no business worrying about it. I think my point is that my load, so to speak, has gotten lighter. I don’t have a lot of excess, therefore my life feels cleaner and more open. It feels simple. I enjoy taking walks, hiking in the mountains, spending time with friends and family, reading books, cooking, writing. All of these simple things and I am thriving.
So when did things get so complicated? When we allowed time to take over; and will it ever go back to the way it was? Only if we make it happen, which is why I have already started doing my part. True happiness is what we make it, and it is that simple.
I have avoided writing an entry like this for some time, but then a very dear friend reminded me that true writers (and I use that word loosely, as I only write for fun) stay true to themselves and write about what is real. So here I am, about to expose myself as the “single white female” - less the clothes-stealing, dog-killing, psychopath behavior.
It has been nearly two years since I have been in a relationship. Yes a few dates here and there, but mostly to keep myself active and not closed up to the idea of loving someone. Even what I had nearly two years ago would not be classified as a typical relationship. Being with someone who is more into themselves than you should never make for such a title, not to mention the words ‘boyfriend’ and ‘girlfriend’ were never spoken. I knew from the beginning that this was just going to be something fun to pass the time and I remember telling myself not to invest too much. Right. To make a long story short I wasn’t the only person in this ‘exclusive’ thing we had going, though I was assured that I was - at least in the town we lived in. Cross those city limits and that was a different story.
You know, you live and you learn. I was more frustrated than sad about it. In my mind, why bother spending so much time with one person when clearly the idea of others seems just as interesting? I have always been clear with the people I am with that if they feel the need to explore other options, to inform me of that before it actually happens. Does that actually happen? Well no, but I most definitely make it clear. I don’t understand what is so hard about ending one thing before beginning another - or several in some occasions. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely have found other people to be attractive while being in a relationship, but I have never acted on that attraction, even if I felt a twinge of will to do so.
My conscience can easily be made to feel guilty. I’m a horrible liar and got away with nothing as a child. From experience, I suppose that is why I never try to get away with anything as an adult. I am also a very committed individual. Like any task I give myself, I feel the need to see it through. I don’t like doing things unless I know that I can give it 111%. This is yet another reason why I have remained single.
I’m not much for casual dating. I have met some great people and the dates I did go on were nothing short of enjoyable, but I spent more time considering the things about these people I didn’t like - something I never really took the time to do before. Used to, I would look beyond those things I didn’t like and think to myself that I could either learn to live with it or convince myself that they would change a few months in. Of course those thoughts never proved to be true. Even those that I have struck an interest in never seem to be available, whether it be emotionally or just literally unavailable - as in I find out they’re seeing someone else. Good stuff. I’ve been the main woman before, knowing there was another and the way it made me feel is a way that no one should feel. We don’t live in the days of The Tudor dynasty, where ‘gentlemen’ had mistresses and it was an understood. Unless you’re a polygamist or a swinger, it’s just not cool. I mean, I’m a serial monogamist for ___’s sake.
I always imagined I would be married with at least one kid by the age of 25. I got the married thing done, but kids? No. My marriage was dissolved within a few months of actually happening, and while we tried to make it work over the following year clearly it didn’t. This is yet another reason why my relationship status still reads “single”. At this point in my life I value lasting relationships. The friends I have made along my path in life are friends that I will carry with me until the end. They love me for who I have become, not who I was. I want the same in the person that dares to come along and sweep me off my feet. Ha. Sorry, that phrase just reads as corny as it sounds.
I think my point is clear though. This time around I want something meaningful in every sense of the word. God, I sound like such a cheesy romance novel. Ok, so I may be tough and whatever at times but I still find myself to be a hopeless romantic, which is surprising to me because the last two years have really jaded my thoughts on romance as well as love. Not that I’m bitter, I suppose that in the midst of being only responsible for myself I have forgotten the pleasure I once got in having someone else to care for. Well that’s not completely true. I’ve doted on friends and family and I am sure they’re all pretty grateful for that. I did spend a week taking care of my dad after heart surgery; I took time off to fly up and spend a few days with my mom for her birthday; I often made dinners for friends and family; I helped my sister plan and put together an entire wedding; I flew out west to see dear friends; spent two weeks with my cousin in SC for the holidays and have just up and gone many, many places over the past several months without having to worry about what my significant other would think about my absence. I mean I’ve done a lot as a single, but ..
I won’t come right out and say that I am ready to dive into a relationship, but I mean I kind of am. That sounds desperate though and that is the very reason I have waited so long to touch on this subject. Maybe it was the ‘sexy music’ last week, or the various inspirations in my life, or that I’ve recently been reminded what it feels like to be attracted to someone. Who knows. I obviously don’t, but it feels good. I’ve been so passionate about living a greener, cleaner life (and food) that the ‘other’ kind of passion kind of fell by the wayside, but it’s back. I remember standing in the crowd at Amos Lee last week, listening and watching him play his guitar and sing, thinking how great it would be to go home and, um, well have someone to hug goodnight .. yes, yes hug goodnight. I looked over at Lisa as she was texting her husband, reading her text, and being a tad envious of her - of all my friends for that matter. I’m not a jealous person, but I do envy the love my friends have all the while wanting my own.
In addition to allowing more time to perfect my culinary skills (and oh how it has paid off - my “other’s” belly will be happy some day), being single for so long has really helped to mold the person I am today. I see things more clearly, with more of an open mind and I am happy - genuinely happy. The last time I had this kind of clarity, I was sitting on a beach in a foreign country thinking about what exactly I must do when I got back - which was break some one’s heart. Awful, I know but it had run it’s course. Mind you this was before I was even ‘married’ but it was just to give an example of just how long it’s been since I’ve had a clear mind. It’s true that only after you ‘lose’ something - or go without for a period of time, in my case - you tend to appreciate it for exactly what it is and what it brings to your life. It may be that I never get married or never achieve a lifelong ‘true’ love, but the important thing will be that I am happy with myself and what I have and will accomplish.
It has officially been one week since I said “au revoir” to any and all animal by-products. I spent my last weekend as a vegetarian with my best friend, and the best sister ever to exist. Amy flew in on Thursday and stayed through Saturday. The 4 days she was here was a complete whirlwind. We hit The Biltmore, our mom’s for two days, Old Salem, downtown Asheville with some awesome buds and a hike just hours before she was to take off on her plane ride home. I didn’t want the weekend to end, but I was excited to start my new lifestyle.
On my first day I managed to hike a bit of the infamous Appalachian Trail - in rain, cold temperatures, dense fog, high winds and muddy inclines no less. Though it was hard to see anything, it was still a beautiful experience. So much so that I am planning to do the entire trek, a whopping 2,181 miles, next year. Just in the last week I have done so much research on the Trail that having to wait another 10 months or so will prove difficult. When inspiration comes to me I typically have to create an outlet as soon as humanly possible, but I am also someone that feels the need to complete something in whole once I start it - so the waiting will be necessary.
On day two I woke up early, made myself a superfood smoothie and hit the road. First stop was the book store. I love grabbing a few books and magazines and snatching up one of the comfy chairs and skimming through each one. It used to be that I was the girl that was always in and out of a place, always in such a hurry, that I never got to appreciate what a little peace felt like. Next I stopped into Trader Joes for some essentials and to chat up the check-out lady I find to be most interesting. Then I was off to Whole Foods, which is like heaven on Earth to me. On average I make it in there a few times a week. The staff is always so engaging and helpful and I am always finding something new to toy with. I’ve recently become obsessed with kale and sweet potatoes. I go through kale like a baby goes through diapers. It is said to be the ‘perfect’ superfood. I agree. After my ‘normal’ two hours roaming through the store I headed home to get ready for what would end up being a great night out with a dear friend and wonderful cousin. We hit the road as soon as she got off of work and had dinner at Early Girl Eatery. Before I go on, let me just take a minute to tell you how in love I am with Asheville, NC. The diversity, the beauty, the culture, the food, the people … I love it. Ok, so I had the Vegan BBQ Bean Burger and fries with sea salt - which was delicious. Everything I have ever had there is nothing short of amazing, plus it reminds me of a former post I once served in LA called Swingers, except with a little more of a country twist. Anyway, after dinner we walked down to The Orange Peel. I scored some tickets to see Amos Lee and asked Lisa to join - since she’s one person I know that will always appreciate ‘the sexy’. It was an amazing show. The combination of PBR and sexy music always amounts to a great time. Amos is delicious and his voice, along with the likes of Otis Redding, Bill Withers and Ray LaMontagne just makes you want to grab a random person on the street to share a passionate kiss with. Ok, maybe not literally but it’s just sexy music. We also ran into Andie MacDowell, who was ever-so-cute. The ride home was just as good. I love grown-up, girl time with Lisa. We laugh over the stupidest things, and cry over things just as dumb but every second is so meaningful.
Wednesday marked my third day, and a very early start. I started watching the little ones again during the day and I must admit that vegan life really started to show it’s power that day. While my muscles were sore from the hike on Monday, I still felt energized. More than I had been in quite some time without the aide of a dash of caffeine - which I have also nearly said ”so long” to. I’m limiting myself to, at most, one cup of green tea a day. The rest of the day I drink fresh juices or hibiscus tea - another fave. Wednesday was fun, despite the number of poops I had to clean up that day, a minor hazard when spending the day with kids.
Thursday was the same except ’boy’ was with us. We played, Eli let me do her hair - after which she insisted that I put every bow she owned on her head, and then I ran off to work downtown that night, a job I love.
Friday was a repeat of Wednesday, except once again I ran off to work downtown. It was a slower night so we closed a little early and everyone got to indulge in their shift drinks a tad sooner. It’s great working with such a small staff, and for people that encourage personal style and being true to yourself.
Saturday was another errand day, though I hate to call them errands since I love making the trips. Off to Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods I went, spending yet another few hours perusing the aisles. I never go in with a plan, I just sort of ‘eye’ things and create things in my head to make. Work that night was a little crazy, maybe it was the approaching ‘rapture’ that was said to occur or just the fact that there is always something going on in the city, but busy nonetheless.
Yesterday was yet another crazy day. Lisa had asked me to help out with a lunch she was making for some new friends that she had invited over. I, of course, obliged since I’ll use any excuse to create and cook. I made a Rosemary-Watermelon Lemonade, Basil-Mint Peach Lemonade, some roasted sweet potatoes, veggies drizzled in my own oil and herb creation, herb-infused basmati rice and Lis made some pan-fried trout and corn souffle. It was a brilliant combined effort and everything was a success.
So here I am, one week later and I am feeling more energized, healthier and most of all happier all-around. Along with my new ‘diet’ I am adopting a more natural over-all lifestyle, purchasing plant-based products for the house and myself. I bought some basil laundry detergent that I am anxiously waiting to use, I got some rosemary cleaner and even my personal hygiene products are all-natural. Even the herb garden got planted and being able to walk out and smell the herbs is just a heavenly experience. I know I sound like a total hippie, and part of me may actually be, but I still shave and you’ll never catch me smelling like patchouli. The smell actually nauseates me a little. I know my friends back home get a kick out of my new lifestyle, but still support and love my as they should. I am happier and healthier and I feel that anything that can achieve these things should be celebrated by the people you love and who love you. Thus, I am thoroughly enjoying the ‘kind life’.
Though I have only recently made the decision to go from vegetarian to vegan, I have been baking vegan for quite some time. I find that my creations since throwing out eggs and milk are more unique and far more tasty.
This week for instance, I went on a baking spree. Tuesday night I Made about 3 1/2 dozen cookies including Oatmeal, Snickerdoodle and Cayenne-Chocolate Snickerdoodles - all vegan and all good. I love chocolate and I love spicy so I thought, “why not put ‘em together”. The result, in my opinion, was magical. You know you have added just the right amount of kick when it doesn’t hit you until you’ve swallowed and isn’t overpowering. I think I mastered it my first try, but that’s my opinion.
The other two I have made before and since I don’t like repetition I tend to try new things. Sometimes I am successful while other times I just tell myself “better next time”. My snickerdoodles went a ‘little soft’ on me, pun intended. I may have been a little too generous on the agave, but they still tasted pretty good. With my oatmeal I tried out a different kind of sugar and while I still love the taste of any oatmeal cookie (without raisins) they weren’t my favorite batch.
I am often overly critical of myself in the kitchen, which normally results in scraping the dough bowl with the spatula. I think deep down I wonder if that one extra bite may be different and change my mind on the outcome. Good thing about baking vegan: lick the bowl all you want. No chance of salmonella or any of the other yucky things possibly lurking in raw batter.
Many of my friends keep telling me to write a book, a cookbook or even start my own little business in the world of food. While it is my dream to someday do so I feel that I want to be able to commit 111% of my time to it. I want it to be my life, and at this point I still have so many things I want to do before I commit to anything.
While I mark the beginning of my journey to vegan life, I am still cooking meat for other people. It comes mostly at request, but I know eventually I will have to give that up as well. Just the other week I made a roast for my cousin and her family. When I asked her the next day how everything was she turned and said to me, “You know, I’m actually kind of pissed. I was telling someone at work that I always thought my roast was the best, but then to have a vegetarian make like the best I’ve ever tasted made me a little upset”.
I cook for friends and family as much as possible and they’ve been so cooperative of the lifestyle I’ve chosen for myself. It makes me happy that my friends and family are so honest and supportive. At least I know my place won’t be empty on opening day - or any day after. Got to love having so many fellow foodies in my life.
I’ve been quiet for a while now. Mostly because I dove straight into my own head and was drowning in the flood of my thoughts. I’ve been relishing my Friday nights alone - just me, a cup of tea and a movie; and my Saturdays with my family. I’ve been going through this whole process of ridding my life of the negative. Basically hitting the delete button on meaningless relationships, negative people and the typical clutter. It feels good to renew and refresh, but it can also be quite overwhelming. My biggest accomplishment has been letting go. I found myself attaching to this small, remote connection, hoping it would grow. In the end I realized that I had to take charge, take control and do what was best for me. I let go. So many feelings and emotions I never even realized I had began to surface. Things I had wanted for myself had quietly been submerged into storage. Now that I feel free, no no - now that I am free, I am ready to live once again. No more settling, hoping for more. No more “I wish”es, more “I will”s. At the end of the day, and regardless of who we fall asleep next to, we only have ourselves and our own thoughts. The other people, other things should be bonuses, not just who or what we live with. As the saying goes: “The ones who matter don’t mind, while the ones that mind don’t matter”.My biggest war right now is with myself. I want to love, and I do love, but my biggest fear is not having it in return. So many relationships, friendships that I have put my all into, my entire being only to be left with disappointment and anger with these individuals for allowing me to believe they were equally involved - then anger with myself for realizing that I, too, was to blame. A simple lyric has lately spoken volumes in regard to my life: “I’ve never been so alone, and I’ve never been so alive.” Who knew such a silly song could have such meaning. But then, as much as I feel alone, I know that I am not. Not only are so many people in my same situation, but I have my family that mean more than the world to me, and the friends that I love as though they are my family. I am truly blessed. The people that have compelled me to leave them in the wind are the unfortunate ones. They’ll never know just exactly who or what they are missing and the love and compassion they could have had. Some would regret the time and effort they put into building those friendships and relationships, but I am grateful. For every disappointment, every heartbreak, every tragedy comes a lesson; and I have learned from every single one. Life in itself is a lesson. We are meant to grow and learn every moment of our lives, and change should be welcomed instead of dismissed. We must not adapt to the world, but to ourselves. I am so looking forward to what will come, and it all starts with helping the most gracious, most beautiful and most amazing sister plan her wedding. Having planned my ‘wedding’ in the 5 hours it took to drive from San Diego to Las Vegas, I never understood the detail of every aspect of putting together such a fete. I have always been great and planning things for other people, but never for myself. Too much planning leaves too much room for error and disappointment in my ‘world’, but give me a reason to throw a party or a reason to celebrate and the creativity starts flowing. I put more energy into helping other people attain happiness than I do helping myself, which I am working on, but my greatest joy is seeing other people smile as a result of something I have done. I go shopping for myself and end up spending more money than I had planned and all on other people. But no complaints. It is well worth it. My sister’s wedding will be beautiful. The vintage-inspired celebration will be just that - a celebration that such an amazing person has found such happiness in her own life that she is ready to share it with another. I could not be more proud and grateful to call her my sister. At 23, she has accomplished so much from buying a home to planning an entire wedding on her own, and everything in between. It is hard for me to think about the fact that we could barely stand to be in the same room at one time, and now I feel as though I cannot get enough time with her. She is the one person with whom I have no secrets, no hesitations and nothing but love for. We support one another completely and she is more than my sister, she is my best friend. I know I am getting sappy, but I am just so happy and excited for her. I am loving every aspect of my part in this wedding and the only thing that is giving me any doubt is my speech as the Maid of Honor. Yes, I am great with my written words and could probably come up with something witty and sincere, but I am also the kind of person that wants everything to be organic. I want it to come directly from the heart, but with that kind of realness will come some heaving waterworks. But if something like a speech is my biggest concern, it should go without saying that everything about this is so right. For a number of years I have had my doubts about marriage, and while I think the sanctity of it has been taken for granted and been cheapened, I do believe that there are still a few who remain committed to what a marriage should truly be. True love exists, you just have to find someone that makes it true. Take that, Jack Handey.
Pain makes us stronger. Tears make us braver. Heartbreak makes us wiser.
I’ve recently decided to transition my life, both inside and out, into a better place. As I have gotten older, friendships and relationships have come to mean something different to me. Things we bring into our lives, much like things we put into our bodies, should be pure. They should be full of nutrients that supply us with the things that make us stronger. Toxicity brings us down, makes us weak. Although, we must experience pain, anger, negativity and heartbreak to fully appreciate the good and healthy in our lives.
Growing up you long to have as many friends as possible. You find yourself exploring different outlets in search of finding what best suits you. Keeping up with ourselves is a life-long journey. We evolve as humans in every way possible. The key to making it work is to have a solid foundation. In order to share ourselves with the world, we must first know where we stand as individuals. “To thine own self be true.” Thank you, Shakespeare. From there, we have roots on which we can allow ourselves to be shared with others, in friendships, relationships, partnerships. We can’t afford to be lost in other’s journeys.
At this point in my life, I am ridding myself of mere acquaintances, negative relationships, the people and things that serve me no good. I would rather put my energy into people and things that exude positivity, that will give back what I put out. True friends are there to see the first tear, catch the second and prevent the third. I am so blessed with a family that has come to accept me as I am. My parents, though having a tumultuous relationship of their own, showed my sister and I nothing but love and support over the years. Not a single night passed without them being the last person to say “I love you” before we slept, and the first to say each morning. Having been raised very conservatively, my outward appearance may be a testament that I have taken an alternate path in life. Not so much the truth. While I have learned to question things for myself, my life and my beliefs are based on the morals I was raised on. Love others. Treat others as you would want to be treated. Love yourself. God loves us all. Need I go on?
Despite your religious affiliation, or lack thereof, I think we all believe there is something bigger out there. It’s an argument everyone can win. Regardless, life in itself is a miracle. We should wake up every day grateful to have even this one shot at life. When you look back at history and look forward into the future, it’s easy to see just how short this life is. Doing so should make you realize that we should make everything count. We are not promised tomorrow, even the next second in life and I want everything I do to be just a small mark in my legacy. I want to love completely, feel completely and live completely.
Granted life is not always easy; so we must rearrange our attitude towards it. When I wake up every morning I tell myself that it is up to me, regardless of what events that may occur that day, to be happy at the end of that day. When we are positive, we attract the positive that exists outside of ourselves. Same for the negative. We choose to be happy. We may not be able to choose who loves us, or even who we love, but we can choose to love ourselves. We should never settle for less than what we deserve.
I want people in my life that WANT to be around me. I want people, though it may sometimes hurt, who will be completely, wholeheartedly honest with me. Obligation is just an excuse. There should be a driving force inside of you that makes you feel as though you must have these certain people around you and in your life. If there are questions, it’s only ‘normal’. But when you find yourself questioning more often than not there is probably a good reason why. Never give yourself to people until you are willing to give your whole self and they are willing to give the same.
I love my friends, my family and they have become one in the same. An ounce of blood weighs more than a pound of friendship, which is why I consider my dearest of friends my family. I want trust, respect, love and acceptance and in turn I offer the same. I am truly blessed, and I am a work in progress - but have a damn good pair of feet on the ground.