pack it in.

September 21, 2017

hammock plant

10 thoughts while packing for the next big move:

  1. where the hell did i get that and why don’t i use it? [literally, no memory. socks, Halloween masks, candles, books, random objects in my desk, scarves…a flag?? good lord you would think i am a hoarder. and then, i finish moving, i unpack, i start cooking my first meal in my brand new kitchen…and i need a can opener. where’s the can opener? do i not own a can opener? fuck, i think i threw out the can opener. never the right amount of stuff.]
  2. who am i going to talk to when i get home? [i have said it before; i love my alone time. it is precious to me. however, yay for a roommate! there is nothing like coming home to a friend who wants to hear how you are and laugh with you about the crazy shit you bumped into in the real world that day. no way i’m not going to miss that.]
  3. why did i get rid of ALL of my furniture the last time? [did i really think that i could afford to buy everything all over again all at once? i think i temporarily lost my mind. temporarily. entirely.]
  4. how long will it take for me to get to know my neighborhood? [you know that feeling… when you suddenly realize that you haven’t been paying attention to driving for 20 minutes and you know your neighborhood so well you feel that ever-so-dangerous autopilot mode kick in. going to try and enjoy those first few weeks of feeling lost and exploring all of the time.]
  5. i wonder what the men are like in this neighborhood. [i am moving to a college neighborhood. so…lots of easy choices but uh-oh. this is no good. maybe i’ll stay in and extra enjoy my alone time for awhile.]
  6. am i fucking crazy to do this? [everything is so, so comfortable. i live in a clean, beautiful home with a person who loves me and a safe neighborhood with hiking and bars. i’m living the American dream. and then, i keep thinking… my own space, my own stuff, my own me with nothing else to lean on… that’s beautiful too. gotta do this delightful thing, even if it’s crazy.]
  7. what if i got rid of everything except my bed? [i was packing a wine glass i haven’t used in 3 years and “just a bed” came to mind. just a bed. that’s odd. or maybe a hammock. a hammock and some plants and that’s all. i think i’m brilliant.]
  8. do i remember how to fix anything? [i’ve been living with a doer. a lady who looks at something broken and just…fixes it. not sure if this is genetic or taught, but i ducked and missed somewhere along the way and i just don’t have it. so curious to see if i remember how to do anything handy all by lonesome. adventure!]
  9. will this be the last one in los angeles? [i cannot help but wonder. should i make a big red X on the calendar for every day i get to spend paying attention to me, myself and i? will this be the last time i get to treat and indulge in self care as we all should, or will this be my forever? the joy is actually found in the unknown, but i really am fond of asking the questions.]
  10. why is bubble wrap so expensive? [dude. it’s ridiculous. is bubble wrap actually shit from a Prince’s gold filled ass? i just spent $22 on a noisy piece of plastic that will roll around approximately 9 water glasses. ugh.]
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soul shifting.

May 14, 2017

10 things that completely shift when you find out you have a life-altering disease:

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1. the taste of food. [i really cannot figure out if this is medicine related or the mind. i prefer to think that my brain immediately realized its own mortality and decided to try anything and everything it illogically hated before – just in case. i have much more respect for my brain this way.]

2. the passage of time. [well what can i say? it is just moving differently. a little slower… a little less rushed… a bit more boring but with more flavor. i can only compare this to being under water with music and light and a mixed feeling of dread and joy. hmmm. i think #2 makes me sound slightly bonkers. oki.]

3. the difficulty of addiction. [have you ever wondered if a doctor ordered you not to do something would it be easier to quit? and then wondered if that was your addict ego just prolonging the quitting and why some people can just stop cold turkey and others get cancer and smoke until their last breath and which one am i? a doctor telling you to quit is the only way to know who you are in this scenario and it turns out…it’s pretty easy. phew.]

4. the purpose. [well shit. it’s not being green-lit to make your movies or getting that perfect job or finding that life partner that feels like coming home or meditation or nothing. turns out, it’s all of it.]

5. the priorities. [i don’t really care about you. i mean, in the bigger sense of things. turning 40 said goodbye to about ten thousand fucks, but finding out you have a degenerative disease? oh hell no. i come first and everyone who loves me is saying it’s about time anyway.]

6. the love and kindness. [i really do care about you. because like it or not, like me or not, we live in a world and a community where we are all interconnected. may sound cliche but the truth is that every piece of love we put out there is a huge something. every. tiny. piece.]

7. the days. [like i said, time already moves a bit differently. i want to wake up every morning and think, what will make me happy today and god damn do it. today i ate 3 pieces of pizza and walked for an hour blasting music. each day a thing we have at our happiness disposal.]

8. the friends. [this morning i got a text message from a girlfriend that said “just thinking of you today and how thankful i am for you! love you.” no joke, this morning. and i get these all the time because i am the luckiest fucking person in the world. everyone deserves such love.]

9. the forgiveness. [i recently had my heart broken. again. and believe me, there are days when i think wow, that is absolutely the last person i will ever get to know in an intimate way. i am done – totally done forever. but then, i think about what my life would be like if i had never met him, and what if this disease does something horrible to me really, really soon. and then i think, thank god. thank god i got that time with another human being who showed me i still have the strength to crack my heart wide open and love. even when it isn’t wanted. my beautiful heart.]

10. the gratefulness. [the taste of food, time, quitting smoking, the ever-allusive purpose of life, myself, others, every day and every friend. forgiveness. for these things i am so grateful and i always will be, as long as i am here. make that as long as humanly possible.]

word.

August 4, 2015

scrabble tiles

10 of my favorite words and why:

1. Synesthesia. [nouna sensation produced in one modality when a stimulus is applied to another modality, as when the hearing of a certain sound induces the visualization of a certain color. i don’t have the privilege of experiencing this neurological phenomenon firsthand, however i can imagine the sound of a girl crying on the Bachelorette inducing the vision of… a collage of reds with a background of a very bland grey. and a knife in my right eye.]

2. frambuesas. [in the 9th grade i had an extremely cool Spanish teacher who was young and funny and went to Rush concerts. i still don’t really know who the hell Rush is or what they sound like. but her favorite word in Spanish was frambuesas. she would say it every day and roll her r’s like she was making love to the word. i have been infatuated ever since.]

3. chalk. [this is all about the sound. there are clear images of the chalk board i had as a child and my hands covered in pink dust after a gymnastics lesson, but more than that i love onomatopoeia. chalk. when i say it i feel it in my throat and remember a classroom and pavement and something else that i can’t quite place.]

4. smoke. [this word immediately recalls memories and sounds and pictures and smells for me. the scent of sulfur when lighting a match, the vision of a swirl of white in the air, the memory of a campfire you worked hard to ignite and kept lit for hours. such wistfulness in 5 letters.]

5. sanctuary. [this word was the theme of a meditation sitting group i attended recently and it spoke to me immediately. there is nothing like the sanctuary and comfort of your own silence and self. a necessary kindness that is so easily accessible if we just take a moment.]

6. serendipity. [there’s a common misconception of this word in America ~ probably due to the unfortunate Cusack movie that we should all just put behind us if we like John at all. “fortunate happenstance” might come to mind when you see the word. what speaks to me: “Serendipity: Look for something, find something else, and realize that what you’ve found is more suited to your needs than what you thought you were looking for.” -Lawrence Block.]

7. solitude. [peace. absence of human interaction. nothing but woods or water or sand or sky. how else can we know anything outside ourselves and stop talking for just a moment?]

8. moist. [why oh why do women everywhere hate this word? i have close friends that look like they are going to literally grab my hair and start a girl fight if i say it one more time. so i say it a lot and i like it. because it’s funny. to annoy people.]

9. gloaming. [does anyone remember that movie In the Gloaming? i was going through a Robert Sean Leonard phase and it was the first time I heard the word. when i later learned it meant “dusk,” which had been one of my favorite words prior, it was immediately replaced. gloaming. that time of day that is just so ethereal. i have always loved the in-between.]

10. suspense. [the cliffhanger, the waiting, the taut gut-wrenching moment, the feeling of being weightless, the thriller that keeps your eyes open so long they begin to feel dry and teary, the magic of being unsure. change is coming and who knows what it will bring?]

much appreciated.

October 9, 2014

poached eggs

10 things it took me over 30 years to enjoy:

1. Eggs [i hated these so much as a kid i smothered them in ketchup. i still enjoy a little ketchup and Sriracha here and there, but man there’s nothing like a poached egg on a Sunday morning. on a crab cake.]

2. Love. [not that i didn’t “enjoy” being in love in the past. that’s clearly impossible. however, hindsight is 20/20 and i do think that i may have taken some of it for granted. between the age of 15 and 33 i was single a total of 11 months. combined. now that i’m officially in the longest stint of singledom i could ever have imagined, i see love as quite the rare blessing & i look forward to really showing it the appreciation it has always deserved.]

3. Alone time. [i’m an only child so there’s been a lot of alone time in my life. i taught my stuffed animals for years ~ just me and my Pound Puppies & Cabbage Patch Kids in my room with a blackboard ~ and i wished for a sibling who could be my real-life playmate. now i realize what a fine thing it is to spend time with just me, myself, and i.]

4. Exercise. [in high school i remember getting up at 5:30am, turning on the television, and working out to Gilad’s Bodies In Motion. he was in Hawaii with some lovely ladies; all sweating and tanning simultaneously. i remember feeling this was a chore that i needed to do – to stay thin and “normal” and not get kicked off the cheerleading squad. now i work out because it makes me feel stronger, taller, more confident and more capable of just about everything.]

5. Compliments. [someone recently made it a point to tell me how much they enjoy reading my blog and how much they would love to see more. this person is not my best friend and is in fact, someone i only see once a year through work. i didn’t even know my blog was on her radar. a decade ago i would have responded with a “gee thanks” or a “oh really? that’s nice.” this time i jumped up and down and clapped my hands and thanked her profusely for feeling that way and telling me. a kid in a candy store.]

6. Straightened hair. [the 25% of my genes that come from Spain give me lovely eyelashes and a healthy appetite for paella and wine but also happen to bestow upon me the weirdest waviest hair ever. i’ve spent countless hours in the bathroom ~ combing, straightening, arranging, and basically trying to pull it all out. now i get my hair chemically straightened every 4 months and i don’t even have to brush it. a simple but marvelous miracle.]

7. Social media. [as my last post suggests, i often feel torn about social media and definitely go through phases of hating it. but overall i’ve come to appreciate and honor this technological gift. we are so very lucky to be able to reconnect with long lost friends and promote our passions with the click of a button.]

8. Hip hop. [i still have a beef with my best friend from my high school who ~ in my perception ~ sees me as that girl i was in 11th grade. living under a music boulder. but when i hit my early 30s there was a re-discovery of a deep love for music and hip hop has worked its way in there like the true baller it is.]

9. A roommate. [with all of the crap we deal with in a day, what’s better than coming home to a person you love? everyone deserves someone who totally gets and accepts you, will always listen, and more than anything will sit in silence with you and watch 19 Kids and Counting.]

moonride kingdom

10. Wes Anderson. [i spent about 10 years telling people that i felt 50/50 on Wes Anderson. in reality, this statement was total bullshit. one of those things you said once and in that moment decided it was definitely the way you felt about it even though you never gave it any thought at all. recently i went through the entire Anderson filmography and realized…uh, yeah i like his stuff. a lot. like more than most filmmakers. oops. sorry everyone. i take it all back.]

 

be social.

September 24, 2014

socialm

5 remarkably bothersome Social Media posts:

1. the attention grab. [it goes something like this: “ohhhhhh NOOOOOO. what a terrible horrible no good very bad day!!” and that’s all they say. let the comments of agonizing questions like “are you OK??” and “call me!!” begin.]

2. the butt plug. [that lovely person who takes the same picture over and over again, makes it into a frame of 6, and then posts about 4-17 times in a matter of 3 minutes. buzz kill. feed kill.]

3. the passer aggressor. [it astonishes me when i see a post that’s oh-not-so-subtly explaining how frustrated they are with a certain someone’s behavior or how upsetting it is that “people” can be so rude or how their c*** girlfriend totally slept with someone else.]

4. the un-appetizer. [food posts can be great. on Instagram i follow @dagmara_ch. she takes beautiful pictures of food that inspire me to eat better and make my meals prettier. however, i do not need to see a picture of soggy pancakes or a half-eaten hotdog. no necessito.]

5. the rant. [i believe social media is an incredible outlet to share your views, dreams, ambitions, successes, and crazy thoughts with the world. or whatever you want to share really. it’s akin to the butt plug though. can we please not fill everyone’s feed with your particular political views every second of every day? sometimes less is more. that is all.]

5 immensely lovable Social Media posts:

1. the accomplishment. [tell me what you’re most proud of. tell me what you’ve been sweating and bleeding over for 4 years and just completed. tell me how grateful you are for this amazing thing you finally got credit for. it inspires me and everyone else and if it doesn’t, who cares about those people anyway?]

2. the comedy. [i get most of mine from Twitter, but there are definitely other sites that provide my favorite jokesters an instantaneous audience to test their jokes. keep ’em coming folks. laughter is the best part of life and if you get more than 100 likes you’d better put that shit in your act.]

3. the big life moments. [similar to #1. if i follow you on any particular social media outlet i WANT to know when you have a baby or get married or fall in love or book your first acting gig or move to the big city or build your dream house. life’s biggest moments are meant to be shared. transitions in life can be overwhelming and daunting but change is beautiful ~ especially when someone’s open about it.]

4. the community. [a few of my friends only use social media to promote. themselves, business ventures, friends’ of friends business ventures, amazing causes, or just awesomeness going on around town. i don’t watch the news very often but i always feel in touch with my community.]

5. the skill. [we are all extremely good at something or several things. i love seeing someone share what they are profoundly good at. whether it’s taking honest and vulnerable photos, finding the most inspiring quotes you’ve never heard before, or creating the best damn quips that make everyone laugh in the middle of their day ~ who couldn’t use a little social media?]

your search ends…

June 30, 2014

2013-08-16-gameofthrones_joffrey-533x399

[Note of importance: My roommate and I are a bit…behind in our conquering of this tiny little show called Game of Thrones. We are working diligently to rectify this quickly. The other evening we decided to do a quick Google search due to our impatience with a certain character. We typed 6 letters into Google and our question popped up as the 2nd possible choice. Google’s algorithms fascinate me and have spurned me to make a list. Enjoy.]

5 amazing Google algorithms that have baffled myself and/or my friends:

1. what ep...does joffrey die

letters typed: 6.  magical telepathic answer: #2. [yes, Google, yes.]

2. is so...y gluten free_1

letters typed: 4.  magical telepathic answer: #4. [gotta ask when sushi is a priority.]

3. am i...pregnant

letters typed: 3.  correct answer: #2. [sometimes you just need to make sure.]

4. what is the le...ftovers about

letters typed: 11.  correct answer: #1. [interesting previews lead to interesting questions.]

5. is my...boyfriend gayletters typed: 4.  correct answer: #4. [again…just making sure.]

 


 

 

5 very odd Google algorithms that confound myself and/or my friends:

1. which d...ivergent fraction are you

letters typed: 6.  oddball answer: #4. [number 1 is kind of funny but number 4 means…what exactly?]

2. making...my way downtown

letters typed: 6.  oddball answer: #4. [um…k.]

3. is h...he the one

letters typed: 3.  oddball answer: #3. [does Google really know?!]

4. why do g...uys get boners

letters typed: 6.  oddball answer: #2. [huh, i never thought that was confusing.]

5. when w...ill I die

letters typed: 5.  oddball answer: #3. [oh my, does Google know this too?]

Image

10 things i ponder over while driving in Los Angeles:

1. city planners. [aren’t these people being paid way too little or way too much? it has to be one or the other cause there ain’t no rhyme or reason to this crap in my opinion. there is no good explanation for me being stuck in my car for 1 hour and managing to get exactly 1 mile. no. good. explanation.]

2. autopilot. [what the hell is that phenomenon anyway? i am intrigued by what happens to us when we enter this “autopilot” mode and literally feel like we’ve been asleep for the majority of a drive and realize when we get to our destination that we don’t remember driving there. did our souls leave our body? did our subconscious get a good nap? did aliens invade my body because they wanted to test drive a 2008 Toyota Matrix?]

3. fate. [in the last month or so, i have passed or driven behind a close LA friend of mine oh…i don’t know. almost EVERY DAY. he lives near me, but still. i’m now trying to ignore how often it’s happening because it makes me feel a little crazy. but it does make me wonder. how many people am i sitting next to at a stoplight that could be my next great friend or my next great love or my next horrible breakup? and how many times did i pass them or sit next to them at that light before we met?]

4. money. [i want a new car goddamn it. and then i ask myself why? and then i ask myself what’s wrong with my car? and then i hear my father’s voice saying you don’t even have a 401K and you are in your mid-thirties. don’t buy a car. and then i pass the Lexus dealership in Beverly Hills and i get very very excited and i am very very confused.]

5. time. [i often wonder how much time i spend in my car and if i could only bottle that time and use it to work or take a vacation or sleep what kind of a person i would be and how much better my life would be and how much more evolved i would be. oh jesus i almost got in an accident. i should stop thinking about time and get back to avoiding being side-swiped by that idiot in a Mercedes suv.]

6. children. [depending on the day my feelings vary on the subject of children. sometimes i want one, sometimes i don’t. when i’m driving i think about how my life would change and how everything i do would change because my priorities would change. would i drive slower? would i try to beat that light a little less often because my precious little baby is in the back? oh and now i’m thinking about how i don’t have sex enough to have children and now i’m at a loss of why this train of thought has any reasoning at all.]

7. Drive. [if it’s very late at night while driving in LA and that perfect 80’s song starts playing i like to pretend i’m Ryan Gosling in Drive and it’s infinitely more fun. or i start to think about Ryan Gosling in general and that’s a lot more fun too.]

8. road trips. [when i was in my early 20’s i loved taking road trips. i took a 7 week camping road trip in a Cabriolet for god’s sake. now i wonder why the fuck anyone would ever want to pile 7 weeks worth of freeze dried food and pillows and lanterns into a tiny little convertible and get stopped at every border because they’re dating an indian guy. oh those silly 20 year olds.]

9. Alaska. [there are several reasons i think moving to Alaska is a very cool and brave thing to do. the best of those is the mental picture i have in my head of my daily Alaskan commute. i picture tundra with no cars. no cars, no people… just the bright reflection of freshly fallen snow and the warmth of my heated seat. i’ve suddenly found myself in a Chevy truck commercial and i’m lovin’ it. ]

10. music. [my car is where i listen to my music but it’s also the place where i realize that i haven’t downloaded nearly enough new music lately and then spend at least 5 minutes thinking about how i need to download more new music and how i need to make a note of it in my phone and then remember that i’ll get a ticket for typing something into my phone while driving and how that’s dangerous anyway and then…i start thinking about fate again. still haven’t downloaded any new music lately. sigh.]

moving on up and down.

August 17, 2012

5 things that truly suck about moving:

1. reality check. [that moment when you’re falling asleep at your desk from searching online and suddenly sit back and sigh. you’ve never had such a distinct view of how much money you make and how incongruent that is to where you’d really love to live.]

2. the reasoning. [the decision process of the “where” can be funny. it’s become the most indecisive thing in my life lately. should i pick a neighborhood based on friends, work, dating, money, weather…or simply go with a street where i’m 94% sure i won’t get shot?]

3. thinking. [thinking about packing, thinking about what i need and don’t need, thinking about the timing of it all, thinking about which sites to use and pay for and how much to just drive around and see what i find that way, thinking about how much to think about it all. exhaustion. i’d rather just hang my bed from a tree and call it a day.]

4. work with no pay. [it’s a full time job looking for a new home. i’m aware that if i really want to find the perfect place i’d better be searching every day, several times per day using multiple search avenues. i have a full time job that often exceeds 40 hours a week. i want my finding-a-new-home-that’s-taking-up-all-of-my-time-and-sanity stipend.]

5. the empty bank account. [between the movers and the first & last down (or downpayment if you’re actually buying something which most likely means you don’t live in LA) and the new piece of furniture that you just had to have because you have a new nook that looks way too empty and the new cable setup fees and the huge grocery store trip that was necessary to fill your empty fridge…poor little bank account is crying out for help but nobody’s home.]

5 things that are truly awesome about moving:

1. clean slate. [i lovingly anticipate the purge that happens with every move. that day i decide to go through my drawers and throw out garbage bags full of clothes i never wear and dishes that have a crack and paperwork i’ll never need because i know in my heart i’ll never get audited. moving is the one and only time i become the minimalist i truly long to be.]

2. clean slate part deux. [a new home is perfectly spotless. there’s no cat hair floating around, no stains on anything yet. new windows, new paint, new locks, new neighbors, new address, new possibilities…new life.]

3. exploring. [there is this great month or two right after moving where walking around your new neighborhood seems like Disneyland. when every bar might be your next favorite dive. when every park is a new place to workout or have a picnic. when every neighbor might be the newest addition to your L.A. family. my advice: buy a beach cruiser and make your next exploration even cooler.]

4. housewarming. [everybody loves a good party but there’s nothing like the housewarming kind. your friends drool over that spotless granite kitchen countertop while you play the role of host and use your new bar to pretend you’re in an episode of Mad Men. this is simply what you always do on a Saturday afternoon. cocktails flow, people compliment, and pride abounds.]

5. things find their place. [i’m smiling just thinking about the process of looking around an empty home and picturing where everything will go that will make me the happiest. feng shui books get opened for the first time in years and there’s great joy in moving that furniture around and around until i’m absolutely positive that everything, including me, has found its perfect place.]

contradicting Tracy.

July 9, 2012

Ten very different but Real versions of Me:

1. The Unfiltered Chatterbox. [the unfiltered part is really just another word for alcohol. parties at my house typically end in me remembering something crazy i said to someone crazy i shouldn’t have and then i spend about a week wondering what and if i should do anything about it. so far, no friends have been permanently lost in this chaos so i’ve got a feeling this version of me isn’t nearly as horrible as my memory serves.]

2. The Sap. [you wanna see a strong & independent Los Angeles woman transform into a pile of crying mush in under 5? turn on SYTYCD or Girls. i’m a sappy dreamer at heart.]

3. The Bitch. [a definite part of my personality i’d appreciate the ability to tap into more often. i obviously don’t want to be an asshole or mean to people…but something to balance out the ridiculously over-accommodating Tracy would be nice. that’s all i’m saying.]

4. The Victim. [an acting teacher of mine once told me my biggest obstacle as an actor was that i saw myself as a victim in life. i am constantly growing further and further away from this concept, but it’s so easy on a grumpy day to let your brain whine “why….me?” pathetic but at least i’m honest.]

5. The Whore. [damn it’s hard being 35. you wake up one day – somewhere around 31 – and realize that every fiber of your being wants to have sex all the time. and then you think, what the hell is this? and then if you’re really smart you realize, oh yeah, my body wants babies even if the rest of me doesn’t. and then you spend the next 10-20 years trying as hard as possible not to seem like a complete whore. cause you aren’t. it’s exhausting.]

6. The Comic. [every once in a while when the moment is right or the moon is full, i am really, really funny. some of my closest girlfriends would say i’m hilarious all of the time, but that’s kind of like how they tell me i’m perfect in every way. maybe a bit biased. i will admit that one-liners on Twitter and chunks of time spent with someone who makes me extremely comfortable (yes you Bill K) enhance my stand-up tendencies. in these moments, i feel pretty cool.]

7. The Ditz. [place me in front of a tall boy who’s cute and nice and flirty and every hour of college, tutoring, and generally accumulated brainpower flies out the window faster than you can say “absurd.” i can comfortably be on stage in front of 1000 people, gracefully impress in a job interview, and confidently share my thoughts through a public blog. but an attractive flirty male is still, after all these years, my own personal kryptonite.]

8. The Therapist. [you got a problem? call me. i’ve been told i give really good advice and i listen with everything i’ve got. okay, maybe only if you’re my friend already cause i really don’t have time to start a whole new business.]

9. The Yes Lady. [i have this awful aversion to saying the word no. kind of like my fear of confrontation, i am logically aware that saying no can be a very good thing, and yet….meh. it’s hard. i don’t even worry if people like me anymore, so my brain’s having a hard time wrapping itself around the meaning behind this one.]

10. The Quiet One. [i am a really talkative, open person about 90% of the time. but there is this very substantial part of me who since living alone needs to be completely silent for hours at a time with a great book or movie and nothing but the birds or crickets chirping outside. if my voice is hoarse from lack of use at 9pm, it’s been a really great day spent with my favorite version of Me.]

color me nostalgic.

May 24, 2012

10 Colors and what they Remind me of:

1. metallic black. [i have many movie obsessions but only one that’s remained consistent and a total enigma: Batman. i don’t love comic books, i know many of these movies were terrible, and yet, i find a compulsion to see every one of these in the movie theater opening night. thank God Nolan is in charge lately.]

2. dirty white. [pussy willows and New York snow. pussy willows were my grandmother’s favorite plant and adorned every table at my long lost wedding. New York snow is…well, it’s own species of snow. a mixture of grime and black street soot that reminds me of my college days and is something i strangely miss.]

3. natural wood. [i don’t recall what type of natural wood it was, but the first house i ever lived in was this color. very 70’s, very eclectic, very modern for its day, very cool.]

4. lilac. [nostalgia might be a touch much for this one, but a memory for sure. lilac reminds me of the shiniest pastel dress ever created; my “Azalea Belle” dress worn during the annual Azalea Festival in NC. white gloves, white parasols, shimmery lilac hoop dresses. it was my own personal nightmare that still makes me giggle.]

5. rusty brown. [the summer i spent working and living on Martha’s Vineyard is filled with drug & alcohol induced memories. however, one that’s clear and brightly sober is the vision of the cliffs of Gay Head. at dusk they turned a reddish brown that makes you think of the most beautiful sunset, baked directly into red clay. i miss morning bike rides to those majestic red cliffs where i could sit and write bad 20 year-old poetry all day long.]

6. molten silver. [solder. i wanted to be a tomboy but i had natural reservations about jumping and climbing and possibly breaking bones. instead, my father let me work with him in his speaker-making shop most afternoons and i learned to solder like no other girl can.]

7. cobalt blue. [my best friend from high school decided that was her favorite color as a kid. she proceeded to receive every gift for every occasion from every person she’s ever met in the form of this color glass. i lived with her and her massive amounts of cobalt blue chachkies in Brooklyn circa 1998. lesson: be careful what you wish for.]

8. gold. [the Eiffel Tower shimmers and glows. you can be the most depressed, bitter person alive but standing in front of that tower of gold in Paris will make you love anything ~ even yourself ~ for a moment.]

9. Carolina blue. [never a true North Carolinian, growing up i rebelled against the waves of people surrounding me that HAD to love basketball and Carolina blue anything. but i did have an interest in an attempt to be popular. hence a very cute ~ and kind of slutty now that i think about it ~ cheerleading outfit with Carolina blue pom-poms on both shoes. i hold the school record for being the only unpopular cheerleader and i challenge all future Hoggard girls to try and break it.]

10. turquoise. [when you walk along the humid beach of Playa de Aro in Spain, stop at a vendor, pop a couple of fresh fried empanadas into your mouth, and take in the turquoise waters and the life of it all. only the Spanish know how to stay up all night, play all day, and eat like there’s no tomorrow.]