Thursday, June 28, 2007

New Camera!

My parents got us a birthdays/anniversary/christmas/all holidays in the coming year gift this week: a brand new shiny digital Nikon D80.

Sweet Jesus, is it fab.

They wanted to give it to us for our Southeast Asia trip, and knowing we would need lots of practice and had a lot to learn they gave it to us now. And it. is. awesome. Last summer they gave us our point and shoot which is UNBELIEVABLY great - I had a hard time imagining this camera could be even better, just that we could do more with it, but it *does* take the most beautiful shots . . . I'm ready to quit my day job and become a photographer already!

(Um, yes, it's only day two. Perhaps I'll wait a bit before making THAT career move.)

We've barely figured out any of the fancy stuff, but I've managed to take a couple shots. You know, of the things I love most. . . .

Expect lots of photos of our lives and favorite people, places and things for the next few entries . . . .

Monday, June 25, 2007


I want to get five glass jars, the old fashioned canning kind. The kind with "Ball" written on the side in cursive.

I'll clean them 'til they shine and set them on a shelf over our oven. In the center of our home. Where everyone passes and everyone stops. Where conversations happen; small ones about chopping onions, and big ones about having babies. Where there are arguments about who should make the salsa (me, because you never get it quite right) or who should wash the dishes (me, again, only this time because I never do them. Never.) The heart of our home. Where things are made, and cleaned, and put away. Where the messes are flung about, but somehow never really last.

When you walk through the door they'd be some of the of the first things you'd see, these jars. All lined up and shining. Filled with marbles and pennies. Shells from beaches and pebbles from trips. The odds and ends that build a life - that build up over the years. The small memories and moments that become us. That define us. That write out our story.

They'd be our hopes and dreams, our plans we've made. They'd be all the walks we took on Sunday afternoons, all the luck we found on Wednesday evenings trapped between footfalls. All the silly games we played in the dark of the night when one of us couldn’t sleep.

All but one.

One I'd keep empty. Filled with magic. Filled with the shadows of lightening bugs. The breath of birthday candles. The laughter of pure joy and surprise.

That one, that one would always be overflowing. Shining and clean. Ever room for more.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

I'll Drink of Anything to Make this World Look New Again

Listening to the Gin Blossoms Lost Horizons for the first time in decades.

Rminds me of home. Of wheat fields, Bogey's shakes - John Flack's car with the super small backseat, driving past golf courses . . . hanging out with Jamie Johnson and dreaming up wonderful futures for us and loving the fast-passing moments of the present.

It makes my heart full.

It also tempts me to immediately buy a ticket to wherever you are, James, and stay up too late drinking (Hawiian Punch, anyone?) and talking and remembering what it was like when the world held such possibility and love and hope.

And sharing our new version of it.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Living the Dream

He taught me that if I put pennies on the train track and was very patient they would double in size.

He patiently had "tea" with me in small plastic cups.

He sat in the back of the truck with me on family vacations and ALWAYS ate the extra burgers in the sack.

He snuck me candy.

He laughed at me.

He pointed to planes and told me someday he'd be flying them, just like the guys in the movies.

He was nine years my elder and my hero.

And when I stood next to him in my home, on the corner of 42nd and Broadway a couple weeks ago, none of that had changed for me. Not in the decades since we've seen each other, in the lifetimes that have passed.

He'll always be that guy I feel infinitely proud to be related to, infinitely blessed that he would take the time to hang with his so much younger, so much different "baby cousin."

And as I introduced him to my husband, as we walked through my city streets - pointing out my work, my neighborhood . . . where I've made my home: it felt so right that he would finally get to meet me all over again. See my life. I wanted to so desperately for him to see I had done well - grown up okay.

And as we sat in Serafina and caught up, as best we could over lunch, it felt as if no time had passed at all. I felt sheer joy a couple times when he had mentioned us going to Yellowstone one summer - as if confirming somehow all my memories were real. After so long apart, it almost felt as if they were just stories in my mind.

And then, the best part - to hear him talk of flying; of his job, what he does now every day.

Which, of course, is everything he once told the smallest version of me he would do. I remember watching planes fly across the sky, trying to imagine him in them - and now, knowing that is exactly what's happening? It could not have filled me with more sheer happiness.

As we walked to the train station to say goodbye, he slowed a bit and said we had done it.

Done what?

We're living the dreams, now, aren't we? And doesn't it feel good?

And my world came into such sharp focus. Suddenly the kids in the back of that truck and the adults we are now stood side by side. All their dreams wrapped up in wishes and hopes at the time, staring at skies and pictures and maps . . .

All that real now. All that as real as we are, standing in Times Square. He going home to fly a plane, me to my apartment 10 minutes from Central Park.

Yes, it feels good. It's feels wonderful and amazing and right.

And even better? Looking into his eyes and knowing he feels it all too. That patient ornery boy I looked up to knows it, too.

The amazing feeling of finally getting to live your dream.

I'm so glad I got to share that with him all these years later.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Catching up

SO, I'm behind. Behind in everything, it seems. So I'm trying to catch up here, then everywhere else.

But I've made myself some promises lately, and with the help of my friend Mikki who's supporting me every step of the way even when she's SICK of hearing me complain, and Sam who's forced to join me by proximity - I'm Living Healthy (TM).

With everything getting so busy and hectic I found myself just feeling worse and worse. I was tired, I was sick, everything hurt. . . and I decided I didn’t' want that for myself.

I mean SERISOULY I'm living in New York City with the love of my life in a good job with great friends and I don't feel good? That sucks. Especially when I can try to change it - so change it I am. (With much as stated above, MUCH support.)

First was following the diet my doctor told me would help combat the Fibromyalgia. No white sugar, no white flour, lean meats, no caffeine.

Um, you can see why up until now this seemed like only a good idea in THEORY to me. Seriously, do you know what's left to eat? Well, there's still stuff, but the list most notably does NOT include pasta, ice cream, chocolate or any of the yummy things I love. Sam, Mikki, and my friend Chris assure me it gets better - but it's been two weeks now and I'm still a little bitter about what I'm eating.

It will get better.

That was my mantra every time we ate out this weekend and I had salad when everyone else had DESSERT.

Baklava, people. Rice pudding. I PASSED. I said "No, thank you" in my most polite voice while being very very angry inside. I want Baklava. I *heart* rice pudding!

But alas. I've made promises and if there's one thing I'm more devoted to than dessert, it's keeping my word, dammit. Though "my word" sure doesn't taste as yummy.

I'm also taking yoga twice a week and going to the gym in the mornings with Sam. (Okay that happened once, but I'm making it a habit! I am!)

I tried "hot yoga" with Mikki last week, but that's an entry all to itself. Needless to say it was a one-time experience.

Anyway, part of my Summer of the Pirate Queen," (don't ask) is making myself happy in the midst of all this - and that's where this blog comes in. I'm no writer, but I do love to write - so you'll be seeing me here more often. Hopefully, I'll have good stuff to say.

But if I don't? That's okay too. I've promised to be less judgmental of myself as well. And that might be the hardest thing of all . . . .