One afternoon while on a long run, I got to thinking.  This was during the long months of unemployment following college, so naturally, my thoughts wandered into the familiar realm of bewildered self-discovery.  I found myself quietly constructing a “What I Should Have Done with the First 23 Years of my Life” list.  It went a little something like this: study English…real English, the classics.  Write. Had a little more, or a little less, fun—serious work pays off just as much as being a free spirit does.  Majored in psychology—I would have written the best books on “self.”  Volunteered—read to the elderly, or the young.  Became a chef, or a food critic, or a wine connoisseur.  Read the lyrics of “Better People” by Xavier Rudd for a more poetic rendition of all this.

…but I guess there’s still time.  And it isn’t until just now that I have even the slightest clue of what I wanted all along.  Life is funny like that.  The majority of us don’t figure out who we really are (or at least want to be) until we’re too old to make it happen.  Or too pessimistic to try.  The world teaches us that most dreams are impossible. Perhaps, the reason for living is to prove the world wrong.  It often seems we live right-side up in a world of upside-downs.

Whenever these kinds of thoughts start swirling around in my head, I call my grammar school best friend who now lives in Sydney, Australia with her boyfriend, a full-time lifeguard and star of a hit reality TV series.  She always was a bit of a free spirit, often dragging me into the muddy stream to “save the minnows” or conducting séances in her basement to speak to the Indian ghosts she believed her house was built over.

“Life is taking you too seriously,” she told me.  At first, I thought she had been sipping a few too many Fosters, but just before I could correct her, she explained herself.  “Over there in America, you all have a formula to follow.  If you don’t graduate from college, get a desk job, land a husband, and start a family, society tells you you’re doing something wrong.  But, if you ask me, that equation is missing a hell of a lot.”

“I guess so,” I managed.
“Sure, all of those things are great…and if there is anyone that is meant to be a mom, it’s you.  But where is the fun?  What ever happened to exploring, traveling, doing something crazy—something worth writing a book about?”

And so I'm taking her advice.  We need to take life seriously--go after our dreams, follow our heart--without letting life take us too seriously.  Make sense?


Chicken-ed Out.

I want to be sitting at this counter with a giant platter of fresh cheese and crackers in front of me, a balloon glass of delicious red wine, and some soothing French music on in the background while I chat with Diane Keaton about her love affair with Jack Nicholson.  (Yes, another Diane Keaton reference.  Ever see Something's Gotta Give?  Classy, turtleneck-loving, writer/mother Diane Keaton flits around this kitchen in the movie.)

Sadly, my New York kitchen is about the size of the double-wide doorway on the left (if that), but one day I'll have a kitchen this grand.  Another tidbit you should know about me is that I absolutely LOVE to cook...and eat.  One of my favorite recipes to make is called 'Cranberry Chicken' because it only involves 4 ingredients, tastes delicious, and is the perfect dish for a dinner party.  You stick it in the oven an hour before you wish to serve dinner, and then you're free to mingle with your guests (aka eat cheese and crackers while gossiping about your love affairs...see above).  No slaving over a hot stove all evening.

Cranberry Chicken:

1 bottle French dressing
1 packet Knorr's French Onion Soup dry mix
1 can whole cranberry sauce
4 chicken breasts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Wash and dry the chicken breasts.  Mix first three ingredients together in a shallow glass baking dish.  Add chicken and coat with mixture.  Cover dish with aluminum foil and bake for 50 minutes.  Uncover and bake for 10 minutes more.  Remove from oven, let cool for 5 minutes.  Serve with rice and vegetable in season.

Cranberry Chicken is truly delicious, but it seems I make chicken over and over, just in different ways.  I could use a few easy, non-chicken recipes.  Any suggestions?  Leave me a comment with your favorite and I'll make an experiment out of it. 

And Diane Keaton, if you're reading this...I'll have you (and Jack) over for dinner anytime.


Rain-ed Out.

God, I love when it rains in New York.  Always uptight New Yorkers let out heartfelt sighs as they duck out of the rain and slide into barstools to meet friends for a neighborhood drink.  A constant stream of sunshine and brake lights reflects off the wet streets as yellow cabs go rushing by.  And NY women break out the boots.  Oh, the boots! The beautiful, beautiful, beautiful boots!

We climb the stairs to our cozy walk-up apartment to indulge in a steaming cup of green mint tea and a good book as we listen to the steady rhythm of the rain on the window.  The world is quieter, more peaceful, and best of all, we have an excuse to stay inside and get away from it all.

God, I love when it rains in New York.


Past relationships are a funny thing.  After they are over, we do one of two things.  Either we personify our past lovers as everything we hate in the world: “How could I have ever loved such an egotistical, unrefined moron?”  Or, we romantically glorify them, inducting them into our own private relationship shrine/hall of fame, requiring that all future romantic interests live up to the impossible standards we project onto our past lovers, so that no matter how wonderful, the new guy always falls short.  Am I right?

Lord knows I am guilty of both.

So, how do we break the cycle? How do we forget about "dude number one" and accept "dude number whatever" for who he is, or who he might be?  Watch the movie 500 Days of Summer (I saw it this weekend and thoroughly enjoyed it) for the answer.  Perhaps all we can hope is that the cycle continues, that after summer there is a fall, that after fall there is a winter.  Perhaps, life without the next step in the cycle is just 500 days of summer.  Perhaps, it's time for fall.


Speed Dat-ed.

So this past Friday a gal pal and I decided to attend a local speed dating event.  We figured it would be a great way to put ourselves out there and meet some new gents.  Good idea, right?

Yeah, worst idea ever.

Most speed dating events are organized so that you have a short 'date' and then at the sound of a bell, you move onto the next dude.  Unfortunately, we took the cheap way out and selected the more economical "single mingle" option, which basically involves packing a bunch of single folks into a bar, handing them a free drink, and asking them to meet one another.  Essentially, this becomes just like any other Friday night, except with name tags and a little more desperation.

Fifteen minutes in, I was cornered by a 50-year-old Peruvian bank teller asking me if I enjoyed foreign films and très leches. Did I mention he also had a lisp?  Sure there were a few decent guys in the crowd, but there was no way to get out from underneath Dario's grasp without being rude, or kneeing him in the balls and running for my life.

I left the event feeling awful.  I had gone for kicks--to mix up my usual Friday night routine, but what I didn't realize was that for most of the singles in the room, this wasn't something they were doing for fun.  This was a last resort.  They weren't just looking for a cute girl's number and a casual drink, they were looking for a life partner who was equally willing to speed up the dating process.  They were looking to cut to the chase--make up for the years lost in their divorce, ignore their social shortcomings, find their soul mate.

After evading Dario's sixteenth request for my contact information and partaking in a short pity party, I started to see the experience in a different light.  In a way, it made me thankful for my situation.  My situation being that, unlike Dario, I didn't need to be there.

I won't be going back to another singles event anytime soon, simply because I'm not ready to give up my high standards.  Now if there's a single and mingle event with a bunch of Ashton Kutcher look-alikes ready to wisk me off to foreign lands and feed me tres leches off their rock hard abs while they reinact scenes from my favorite romance films, then perhaps I'll sign up.  But for now, I'm content being young, single, and free.


Lov-ed, Actually.

It was so bright that afternoon I thought I was seeing everything under a magnifying glass.  All the vibrant colors of spring were intensified to the point where my spirit was bursting with poems.  We lay together as the cool breeze entered through the open windows and whizzed around the fan.  Sweat collected on his upper lip and made him taste like the sea as we kissed.  Softly, he tickled my belly button as I giggled wildly.  Suddenly, the rhythmic sound of a car’s motor made its way up the driveway.

A delivery for you,” someone called from downstairs.  I looked at him knowingly.  Anxiously, I tumbled down the stairs, colliding with a vase of carnations.

“Carnations?!” he yelled suspiciously.  “I ordered a bouquet of exotic flowers!”

But that was just it – our love wasn’t exotic.  It was ordinary, but beautiful just the same.  The relationship, like the flowers, eventually wilted, but the vase remains, waiting to be filled again.


No one will ever change enough to love a different way.


Paris, Introduc-ed.

I told you we'd talk about Paris...

We were walking along the Seine, licking Berthillion ice cream cones, talking about our futures.  I decided to try out my new History of Paris knowledge on the beautiful French man walking beside me as we crossed over to Isle-St-Louis.  

"Ahem," (cue sexy French voice) "You know, this is the oldest neighborhood in Paris."

He didn’t miss a beat.  “Yes, and it is the most expensive neighborhood in Paris.”


Why hadn’t I thought of that?! Instead, I thought: only in Paris is the oldest place in the city the most expensive!

“One day I will own an apartment on this island,” he continued, “and you will come and live with me.” Though I very well knew this relationship--or whatever it was we had--would not survive my departure from Paris, I nodded. 

 “Only if you drape me in jewels,” I teased.

And that is how life went in Paris.  I floated along in a dream-like state not knowing what was real and what was a figment of my imagination.  One moment I was a beautiful dame, draped in jewels, a cigarette in my wrinkly hands that I smoked through a long filter like they only do in old movies, calling everyone 'darling' and 'chérie.'  The next I was a young twenty-year-old staggering out of Pub St. Michel into the hazy dusk of morning in search of some carbohydrates and my bed.

Those six months were the sweetest I can remember, both because I consumed six thousand times my body weight in French pastries and because I cannot remember another time in my life when I did not have to seek happiness.  In Paris, it just found me.  I am not saying that I just floated down the tiny rues in a constant haze of utopia, but that even when I was miserable, it was beautiful.  Paris is the only city in the world that I have ever been to where you can be just as happy being happy as being miserable.  A glass of wine in an outdoor café tastes just as delicious when shared with a lover as when contemplating one’s miserable life.

Not to worry...Frenchie will return in future episodes.  (And my hangover is doing much better, thank you.  Must be all the cake.)

Over Indulg-ed.

Wouldn't this just be the life?  So many pastries you'd live in permanent sugar high, dresses that hide love handles and simultaneously give your boobies a boost, shoes with pom-poms and kitten heels, a giant feather in the hair, and someone to wait on you hand and foot.  Oh, and did I mention you have power over the entire land? Yes, I do believe this would be the life.

I guess there would be minor details like no running water and a people's revolution that might be a bit of a nuisance, but then you could just say really obnoxious things and become famous for them.  I mean, what if MA had said "Let them eat pie?"  Not as chic.  You can't put pink frosting on a cherry pie, now can you?

Just in case you're confused, I'm posting this for three reasons:
  1. A girl can dream...
  2. To prove that the grass is always greener a few decades ago.
  3. I'm a wee bit hungover (oops) in cube anonymous and the combo of cake, lounge chair, and sleep seem like heaven right now.
(I know 3 is the cooler number, but reason #4 is because this movie rocks! See Marie Antoinette now.)


Chalk-ed up to Romance.

This is the first of many "why don't we (blank) anymore?" posts. Perhaps with your help, we can bring some of these fabulous things back.  I hope so.  Anyway, here's the first of my woes:

Why don't we make grand romantic gestures anymore? 

Like this one:  One morning during my stay in Paris (Did I mention I lived in Paris for 6 months? No? Well, we'll talk about that later.) I walked outside of my apartment to find a trail of chalk-drawn hearts on the sidewalk. Totally normal, right? Each heart had a little message in it, so being the curious romantic that I am, I decided to follow the trail and see where it lead.  The first:

 "I love you a little..."

By this point I was already secretly plotting how I could construct a tarp over this casual piece of art so the rain could never wash it away, when I spotted the next one:

"I love you a lot..." 

 Are you melting yet?  I was. Hardcore. A few more steps and I found the next:

"Are you starting to see where you're going?"

Okay, now I'm officially intrigued. Where are we going?!  What will we find when we get there?!

Realizing what a strange tourist I looked like, taking pictures of the ground, I moved along quickly, desperate to find the next message in line.  The trail wound through the tiny streets of the left bank, over the Seine on the wooden footbridge Passerelle des Arts, and across the street to the Louvre.  There I stood, in front of the museum famous for some of the most grandiose and romantic masterpieces in the world, staring at amateur chalk-drawn hearts on the ground.  I believe our friend Alanis would have something to say...isn't it ironic?  Don't you think?  Finally it appeared I had found the last message on the sidewalk scavenger hunt.  Pushing tourists out of the way before their white tennis shoes smudged the message, I found the happy ending:

"Tu es la femme de ma vie.  Veux-tu m'épouser?"
Translation: "You are the woman of my life.  Will you marry me?"

As Rachel Zoe says, I die!  Only in Paris would one follow a trail of glorified post-it notes a mile to discover a marriage proposal written so beautifully and yet so simply by a mystery writer.  When was the last time you saw something like this on the streets of New York?  Chicago? Anywhere?

So I say it's time to bring the love back.  Let's make grand romantic gestures just because we can!  And sorry fellas, a text message just doesn't cut it.  (Did I mention I was single?)



Just wanted to share a little inspirational verse on a gray Tuesday. It's really too bad Longfellow isn't on Twitter because I'd follow him to the end of the earth--never had a thing for facial hair, but I'd get over the beard thing (and the age difference) if only he'd recite lyrics to me all day. And if he spoke French, well, that would just be unfair.
A Psalm of Life
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Tell me not in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.

Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
Dust thou are, to dust thou returnest,
Was not spoken of the soul.

Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way;
But to act, that each tomorrow
Find us farther than today.

Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.

In the world's broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife!

Trust no Future, howe'er pleasant!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act, - act in the living Present!
Heart within, and God o'erhead!

Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sand of time;

Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o'er life's solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.

Let us then be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.


We're really dumb sometimes.  You know that?  Really dumb.  We have vendettas against people for so long that we forget why we're even holding the grudge.  And to be honest, there's no room in this world for grudges.  They're the cause of war, heartbreak, and loss.  Why do I bring this up, you ask? Well, last night I had dinner with my mom and a few old friends of ours.  One of the women that attended, I've known since I was in kindergarten, and despite our mother's closeness, I've never been able to let go of the idea that she just doesn't seem to like me.  I never really understood why and so instead of confronting her and talking it out, I've just avoided her at every family function and told my mother we 'just were very different people.'  But last night, for the first time since we've known each other, we finally were able to sit down and talk/act like adults.  Suddenly the dark cloud that had been looming over a could-be friendship lifted and oddly enough, we realized we have a ton in common.  All it took was a fresh outlook and a little laughter to make us see that we could have been really great friends all this time.  So, I've made a personal resolution to start anew--spread the love.  I can now argue that ignorance is not bliss--sometimes ignorance is the one thing standing in our way of a good thing.  So let's stop being stoop-ed and start making friends.


Highly Principl-ed.

This weekend during brunch with my oldest friend, we got to talking about the philosophy of life.  She mentioned that she was reading The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, which is now on the top of my reading list after I finish The Pillars of the Earth.  Basically we discussed how as humans, we tend to focus our lives around one theme, be it work, family, relationships, etc.  Though the focus often changes as our lives change, these external foci always leave us feeling as though we're not in control; however, if we concentrate on living our lives based on principles, we feel more empowered and therefore, more effective.  She didn't go into detail about what author Stephen Covey believed his 7 principles were, and I'm sure I'll have more insight after reading the book, but I thought this was a very interesting idea.

Whether I like it or not, I often find my happiness depends a lot on how my work life is progressing (not much), how exciting my love life is (see pseudo-date reference), and how much family support I receive (lots, but never enough).  Instead, I've decided I will begin focusing on a few principles:
  1. Accept. I will accept that this is my perfect life...right now.  No waiting around for something different to happen, the best for right now is here and ready.
  2. Minimize. One's life is never bigger than the little things that it's made of: a decadent piece of chocolate cake, a long fall run, a super late night with friends, a 'job well done' email from the boss man, a smile left for a stranger.  The littler your life is, the bigger and better it gets. 
  3. Maximize.  Seize the opportunities presented to you.  And keep your eyes and ears open, sometimes opportunity knocks softly. 
  4. Love.  Dish it out in every shape and form.  And be sure to give yourself a extra large helping. 
  5. Believe.  Trust that you're stronger than you realize.  If you believe in yourself, and in your decisions, whatever they may be, you will always be right.
So I'm not quite at 7, but I think it's a good start.  Besides, I've always been highly principl-ed.

(image from Cal Tech website)



It's Friday at 4:53PM and my weekend begins in 7 minutes.  Here's what's on the playlist for the next 3 days:
  1. Pseudo-date. (No details for fear of jinxing.)
  2. Sleep in, overstuffed bed, fresh sheets.
  3. Brunch with the girls, cappuccino, gush about pseudo-date.
  4. Search for perfect fall coat, find unneeded but perfect new ring.
  5. Dinner party chez moi for out of town guests, homemade pizzas, wine, love.
  6. More sleeping in, read, pray for morning rain for excuse to stay in bed longer.
  7. Mid-morning cinnamon coffee, walk in park, stop at museum for leisurely tour.
  8. Meet Mom for dinner, show off new ring, ask for fall coat.
  9. Wait for pseudo-date to call.
  10. Bliss.


All Sort-ed Out.

So the past few days have been a bit of a struggle. After a few tears, many bouts with frustration, and a large dose of support, I've finally come up with an acceptable post. Because let's be honest, who wants to read a "poor me pity party post?" (How's that for some alliteration?) This blog project began as an escape from the mundane-ness of work--a way to sort out my thoughts and have a little fun along the way. However, lately my thoughts have been a bit unruly. Usually if I can keep busy at work, I don't think about how much I wish I wasn't at work, but recently I haven't been able to get my mind on anything else. So after some trial and error (wine, beer, tequila...although temporary solutions to the problem always left me feeling worse off than before), I decided that the solution might be running.

Why is it that when our bodies are busiest, our minds are most at peace? It is only when I'm running, all muscles engaged, that I have my clearest, most inspiring ideas. The rest of the world seems to melt away and it is just me and my thoughts. I feel like just as we must routinely organize our desk, clean the bathroom, and re-stock the fridge, our minds need a re-org on a regular basis. The housekeeper needs to come in and "straighten up" the place.

Admittedly, sometimes my mind feels like a teenager's dorm room during finals, the floor scattered with dirty clothes, empty pizza boxes, and unfinished term papers. And yet other times, it feels like my grandmother's living room, not a thing out of place--a quick dust and we're good to go. Whatever the state of my thoughts, a run always serves as my housekeeping. As my sneakers pound the pavement, I can sort through the cobwebs in my brain, tucking the thoughts about disappointments and missed opportunities under the rug, and displaying the bright, inspired ones front and center on the coffee table.

Lately, the need for these runs has become more and more apparent. I've been taking advantage of the beautiful fall-esque weather and opting for long shaded jaunts in Central Park. Whether it's the endorphins pumping through my blood stream (anyone else wonder why no one has been able to develop an 'endorphin drug'? I'd inject that juice directly into my bloodstream without batting an eyelash), the tightening of my hamstrings, or the ability to let my mind run free that helps sort everything out, I'm not sure. But what I realized last night as I rounded the lower loop of CP is that that's okay. In fact, that uncertainty seems to be the essence of life. If we were sure about everything, there'd be nothing left to discover. And when you really think about it, we'll probably never have everything sorted out. That's the whole point--that just when we have everything alphabetized on the bookshelves of our minds, life comes in and pulls all the books off the shelves so they fall open to new, unread pages.

(photo from weburbanist.com)


A la Mod-ed

No, this is not a post about ice cream. Although some savvy marketing folk should nab this idea for their next Fashion's Night Out promotion: La Mode, A la Mode. How yummy, fashion with a cherry on top?!

Anyway, en route to grab a casual drink, a dear friend and I stumbled upon the festivities of FNO 2009 last Thursday evening in the Meatpacking district and feasted on all the delicious new designer collections while imbibing in champagne, cupcakes, and chicken quesadillas (courtesy of the best "underground" Mexican eatery in NYC, La Esquina--make a reservation immediately, it will take you a few months to get in). As we stumbled from one drink line to the next, I couldn't help but smile. Okay, yes I was a little deliriously drunk, but that's beside the point. I was smiling because it was exactly what I envisioned my NYC life to be: glamorous, random, friend-filled, and a little hazy. The fact that I am the farthest thing from a fashionista, and that I wouldn't be able to afford a La Esquina margarita, nevermind a silver Matthew Williamson dress, is completely irrelevant. I am doing it. I am living the dream.

As I stumbled over the cobblestone streets, toes neatly crammed into stiletto pumps, I thought the only thing that could make this evening more complete would be a little hot fudge and a few sprinkles. Just then, a beautifully tanned man swooped in with his iPhone to request my number: talk about hot fudge...And then it began to rain ever so lightly.


Faith Renew-ed.

There are still good people in this world. I am sure of it. Every once in a while the universe reminds us that truth and honesty still exist. Yesterday, the universe sent me a reminder in a US Postal Service envelope. Inside: my lost wallet. Not a dime was missing.

So, I've been contemplating the best way to thank the universe. Would a note and a twenty dollar bill suffice? Or is it more appropriate to pay it forward? I couldn't decide, so I'll do both for good measure.

First thing this morning, I dropped off a thank you note at the post office: "Thank you for giving me my life back. I hope the world recognizes your good deed and and sends some love your way. And just in case the universe is a little slow, please accept this small thank you as an advance. Gratefully yours, me."

Now for the pay it forward movement. This afternoon during my lunch break, I will make a stop at the blood bank and donate as much as they'll allow. Care to join me as I send out some love into the universe? Suggestions welcome...


Ston-ed to Death.

With the recent wave of fall weather wafting through the city, I can't help but look forward to the cooler months. Most people mourn the end of summer, but I celebrate the arrival of beautiful scarves, hot cocoa overflowing with mini-marshmallows, and the excuse to cuddle a cutie anywhere, anytime. Sure, life is not always so sweet, but a girl can hope.

Upon the arrival of late fall/early winter, I pop in my favorite movie and hit repeat. Please do not judge me for my taste in movies--I do not have a background in film, nor do I consider myself of the artsy breed by any means, so I am perfectly content with my lesser known chick flick choice, The Family Stone. I'm not quite sure what makes me love the film so much, but I will try to explain. For a more eloquent review of The Family Stone, visit this lovely LATimes review.

The movie is a story about a real family who, like all families, loves and irritates each other at the same time. The hustle and bustle of the full house always has me longing to have a litter of my own because along with the added dramas comes added love. I grew up in a small nuclear family and though I have many aunts, uncles, cousins, etc., we lived a long drive apart at best. So, I have come to live vicariously through the Stones.

Diane Keaton, who plays the matriarch, is quite possibly my favorite actress of all time for her classic look, fantastic performance, and striking resemblance to my own mother. Throughout the film, she calls it like it is, and has no qualms about making outsiders earn her love, trust, and attention. It is also important to note that her outfits are absolutely divine--to me, she is the ultimate white shirt and red lipstick lady.

And they could not have found a more beautiful home for the set! The wrap-around porch, circular drive, and snowy landscape are straight out of a dream. And the perfectly lived-in decor make me want to turn my apartment into a wallpapered hovel! The coffee pot is always on, there's always a light on in the window and voices can always be heard around the dinner table. It's home.

In the coming months, as I gear up for the holidays, I will probably watch the movie a minimum of 10 times because it just makes me feel warm and cozy inside. We all have our rituals, whether it's making the Morton family strata every Christmas morning, hanging the same ornament first every year, or watching TFS on the couch the evening of the season's first snow. These rituals remind us that no matter how many times we do something, that same good feeling still remains as strong as the last time. So, if I had my choice, I'd be Ston-ed to death.


  • to be the ever-refined woman who looks most stunning in red lipstick and a starched white shirt.
  • to frame photos from my travels and hang them around my home to spark conversation with guests and to always keep the memory of the destination fresh.
  • to become an early riser; one who enjoys a cup of perfectly brewed coffee, the newspaper, and a beautiful view for a few moments of peace each morning.
  • to be the ultimate hostess; Sunday brunch in the garden, Winter Cocktails parties, Celebrations for Nothing in Particular, etc.
  • to make a habit of keeping a journal to record my thoughts, dreams, desires, resolutions, etc.
  • to become an excellent cook, perfecting as many dishes and committing the recipes to memory, starting with my mother's tarte aux aubergines.
  • to revisit my family roots in Kerry & Cork, Ireland.
  • to record my grandmother Eddy's story in all its marvelous, detailed glory.
  • to spend one week in perfect silence in order to discover my inner voice and learn to truly listen.
  • to learn how to meditate.
  • to learn to see myself in a way I never before knew I could; to develop a type of higher vision that is unattainable by simple reflection or obvious observation.
  • to work on my golf game ("a life skill" says Dad).
  • to have an entire wall in my home dedicated to a built-in bookshelf filled with books I love.
  • to have dinner party guests who inspire intellectual and educational conversation.
  • to have my own garden where I can grow vegetables, fruits, and vegetables to use in my dishes.
  • to find inner peace.
  • to be an inspiration to others.
  • to focus on the little things. they are the best things.



Perhaps the title of this post should be listed in the present tense, "recover-ing," as it seems to be a process still in progress. This weekend I had a few college friends in town and with them came excessive drinking, smoking, and other mindless acts. Mind you, I am normally a very responsible person--too much at times--so when I managed to break my phone and lose my wallet all in 24 hours, I was beside myself. (Side note: how does "beside myself" translate to mean being very upset?) Anyway, I canceled all of my cards, crossed my fingers that my identity was still in tact, bucked up and bought a new phone, and finally, took a deep breath. I am now an iPhone convert, a penniless employee (not that the $10 left in my wallet at the time would have made me much richer), and a bit of a lost soul.

I know I'm not the first or the last to experience such annoyances. And I understand that I'm probably still better off than others who have been in my position, but losing what feels like one's life--the ability to communicate, identify oneself, and/or make a purchase--makes you reconsider the way we live. Part of my recovery process has inadvertently involved an inventory check. All of the truly important things in my life were still there--family, friends, health, love, dignity, humor. Perhaps I had more than I realized. With these in my pocket, what loss would I not be able to recover from?

My identity may be lost, but I've never felt more myself.



"Sometimes I can hear my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I'm not living." - Jonathan Safran Foer

If you have not read Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close please stop what you're doing and hunker down in Barnes & Noble with a Venti non-fat vanilla latte until you've read all 368 pages (don't panic, it has pictures!) A boy I once thought way too much about gifted it to me and I gobbled it up on one 3-hour plane ride. I no longer think much about the boy, but the book has left an unshakable impression on me.

Like the fire-red imprint of the hand on the front cover, it seems this one line has seared a permanent thought onto my brain. The thought weighs on my existence more heavily every day and I fear if I don't find a way to forget it, my bones will crack under the pressure of not enough.

Why is it that no matter what we're doing, we question what it would be like to be doing something else? I have a job, but the thrills of unemployment beckon. I am a city girl, but the lazy country life might suit me better. I am single, but wouldn't it be nice to settle down?

There are so many things I'm not doing. So many places I'm not going. So many people I'm not meeting.

So many lives I'm not living...how will the one I am living ever be enough?


I thought that we should get to know one another a bit, so I'd like to briefly introduce myself in the best way I know how.

I am:
A list-maker,
A hopeless romantic,
A planner,
A world traveler,
A loyal friend,
An avid reader,
A Food Network junkie,
A Jersey girl,
A taurus,
A college graduate,
A big sister,
A perfectionist,
A brunette,
A believer,
A francophone,
A glutton,
A runner,
A dog lover,
But it appears I may be unlist-ed.


Bor-ed and Insane

The -ed Chronicles all began one afternoon when boredom met insanity and decided to have a child: blog.

I have hopes that this will become both a form of entertainment for you and an outlet for me and my occasionally insipir-ed ideas. I guess it spurr-ed from the idea that perhaps if we're lucky, we'll find the (-ed) we're all looking for. Because let's face it, we're all in search of something: to be hir-ed, lov-ed, inspir-ed, accept-ed, publish-ed, befriend-ed, stimulat-ed, inform-ed, bless-ed...

So, here's hoping the -ed is out there.

And I apologize in advance for all the -ed puns. There will be many.