celebrating resilience

So I treated myself, because I deserve a treat sometimes…as we all deserve a treat every now and then…in moderation, always in moderation. But yes, I treated myself.

The packaging alone is enough to make me smile…and feel pretty…even if I didn’t bother to put on makeup or fix my hair or wear jewelry.

And then I opened the box and put on this lovely called Resilience.

I bought it because it’s absolutely gorgeous.

I bought it because 20% of the profits of this cuff will benefit The Noreen Fraser Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to raising funds for breakthrough research that advances precision medicine for the prevention and treatment of women’s cancers.

I bought it because as it delicately encircles my wrist, it reminds me of my own resiliency; my own remarkable ability to bounce back from some really crazy, awful, no-good, horrible, very bad things over the last half century…literally…stretched, bent, compressed and stretched in ways I could never imagine that I could come back from…and yet I did; no matter the direction life has taken me. Someday I might have a long heart to heart with some of the crazy side roads Life took me on, especially when I was too young to have any control but for now I will look at this lovely delicate cuff and remind myself just how strong I am.

I will also pause to think about and celebrate people I know who right now are proving their own resiliency as they are coming back from some pretty fucked up things:

  • starting over with a family who depends on them as they leave a dangerous, abusive situation strengthened by a tribe of people who love her
  • taking the chance to try again after living through the most unimaginable loss that you never get over…again surrounded by family and a circle of people supporting with so much love and so much encouragement and so much prayer
  • finally figuring out what education and career path is the one you want to be on after a few starts and stops and fails along the way…again surrounded by family and friends cheering you on because they believe in you and cheer for you…especially when you stumble and when you get back up to try again.

Not every resilient person finds themselves surrounded by unconditional support and love…at least at first glance. Still we survive and we thrive as we embrace our ability to handle whatever direction life takes us…in spite of the pain, the unbelievable grief and every other shitty roadblock along the way…because there is also a lot of love and blessings too.

5,6,7, fixed

So about Stitch Fix…

It’s been awhile and three boxes later, I have to confess that I came very close to thinking that perhaps the scrubs and t-shirts and shorts and jeans kind of girl that I am just might not be Fix-able.

Stitch #5:

Looked very cute packaged in the box and on paper. But nope times three. Sorry. Can’t lie. Bu-ut, there was two wins.

The London Times Sandra Maxi Dress

and the Bash Eaton Knit Top

Don’t judge, it was an incredibly bad hair day, no makeup and sleep deprived because I remain, always, Vampira the Night Shift Nurse.

Stitch Fix #6 came the following month.

And it proved to be a lot of nope because one can have too many maxi dresses…really. Also I was becoming weary of all the polyester. Being the scrubs and t-shirts and jeans kind of lady that I am, I was beginning to realize that I am also a natural fibers kind of girl too. Yes, I told my stylist that. I also included that one of the tops I actually did kind of like (in spite of the polyester) except it was missing a button. It was then that I learned that I could always request another. The fact that my stylist followed up apologizing for the product defect really pleased me. I’m all about good customer service and follow up. But there was one keeper because there was a wedding reception to attend.

The Le Lis Raven Dress

Then came Stitch Fix #7 and I was glad that I offered so much feedback and listened to my stylist.

It’s Fall y’all and it was all packed up in this Stitch Fix delivery. Too bad it was literally over 100º when it arrived because that, my friends is Fall in the Central Valley. Still…

The Urban Expressions Valerie Convertible Satchel doesn’t care what the temperature is.

Literally the most amazing bag that holds everything and looks good, so good. When your 13 year old son, your darling husband and your 21 year old daughter (who is pretty much never home because of school, work and 21 year old life is in the way) notice the bag and tell you what a great looking bag that is you know it is a keeper.

The Loveappella McGraw Two-Tone Stripe Knit Top

Fit like a dream with the perfect drape…and the cut-out in the back…perfect and kept.

Ignore the dirty mirror as I was ignoring the fact that it was 104º when I was wearing this and taking this picture. It’s better that way.

Next the Just Black Faye Skinny Jean and the RD Style Giana Open Drape Cardigan

With the bag too…we’re both ignoring the dirty mirror and the triple digits, right? Right. It might be hotter than balls but that sweater will be perfect come Winter…El Niño or no…please El Niño! Please, please, please! And the charcoal grey skinny jeans fit like a dream and definitely a keeper for Fall and Winter and Spring. Keep and keep!

Finally the Renee C Edmondo Stud Detailed Split-Back Blouse

LOVE! But this one pictured in the dirty mirror was too tight. But I wanted it…and with the 25% discount if I kept all five fixes it literally would be free because 25% off. I wanted it even more. But it didn’t fit. So I emailed my stylist with my dilemma asking if I could get the next size up? Of course, she answered back right away!  Oh happy day! I sent the too small blouse in the postage paid bag included in the shipment and three days later the right sized blouse arrived.

So the lesson learned for me is feedback is so important with fixes. So is taking advantage of social media so your stylist can see what interests you…that bag, those jeans, more natural fibers…pinned them all. I also learned that exchanges are just too easy. So is the follow up after the exchange to make sure that I was more than satisfied. Who knows what the next Fix will bring next month?

We shall see.

Want to know more? Check it out.

Want to get your own Fix? Use my referral link and go for it!

what kind of mother let’s her kid read Furiously Happy anyway?

Judge me.

I don’t care.

We’ll get to back to that in a minute.

But first can I tell you how Furiously Happy I am right now that this arrived here today under The Big Top?

I am.

I might be already more than halfway through the book too. Might have been done were it not for getting my eyes dilated. The eyes remain extra special…so special that Costco Optometry gets added to the list of places that can’t fill my prescription. Of course that means that I get to spend a ridiculous amount of money above what our vision plan covers. It’s a burden to have extra special eyes. You just can’t imagine.

But back to this book and being furiously happy…I can’t wait to finish reading it, and celebrating my own personal bizarre-ness and my weirdness and even the crazy way that I  was broken because in spite of the anxiety and depression and all around messed up-ness that is me being broken and the smile that tries to hide it all, it is who I am…and a lot of people seem to like and love the me that I am…even with all the messed up-ness…or in spite of it…or because of it.

I am broken. I am broken in so many ways, ways that I have written about before and ways that only a very small circle might know. Shit happens. Shit happens that should never happen to any person. It’s for real. It’s me. And it’s the me that I has been working on and accepting and forgiving and loving…whether I am smiling or not. It’s just me, broken but furiously happy me. And why not celebrate it?

I’m not alone.

Thank goodness I am not.

We are people who have been searching and continue to look for the light in spite of the dark, horrible and shitty things in our lives that weigh us down, that steal our joy, that lie to us.

So, what kind of mother let’s her kid read Furiously Happy?

Well, when your kid is 13…and your kid is with you at the optician that can fill the prescription for your extra special eyes and has homework to do including reading for twenty minutes that he has to get done before Tae Kwon Do and tutoring and dinner, you hand him your book opened to chapter 5 and tell him to read about Rory the Raccoon (see book cover).

I had already read the chapter and vetted it declaring it to be PG13 and okay for my kid to read…so don’t hate.


OMG! This is so inappropriate, Mom!

Take note he said that in between adolescent snickers and giggles.

His favorite part? Rory teasing Victor and riding Ferris Mewler because really what is there not to love about a dead raccoon in your bed or frolicking bareback on a cat?

He wrote about it in his reading journal. Yes, he included that he couldn’t believe that his mom let him read a chapter from this inappropriate book but it was okay because his mom is kind of crazy.

I am imagining that my meeting with his teacher next week is going to be, um, interesting…unless she too is a fan of Jenny Lawson.

Remember when I recommended Jenny’s first book?

Ditto! Ditto times infinity.

not so zestful but not dead yet

The question is blogging dead seems to be making the rounds again.


Google “is blogging dead” and it will literally pop up with years I guess because every year someone asks “is blogging dead?”

But yes, it seems that someone again is asking if blogging is dead because yes, some of the favorites, most popular and most successful bloggers, including some friends of mine, have stopped. Dooce stops  (sort of, kind of) so it would follow that everyone else is done too.

So, is blogging dead?

I could offer my opinion but I would much rather defer to the wisdom of Jenny Lawson, The Bloggess herself. Added bonus is she pretty much gives permission to write whatever the shit you want to write. When one is The Bloggess one can make such a pronouncement. At least I believe so.

True, I might be posting rather sporadically of late which might suggest the end is near and I could offer so many reasons why including

  • I’m too busy
  • I’m too tired
  • I have nothing to say
  • I have too much to say
  • one of my kids demanded that I not write about THAT
  • ALL of my kids demanded that I not write about THAT
  • I demanded that I not write about THAT
  • you guys actually are reading this
  • I know some of you in real life
  • I honestly don’t want those of you whom I know face to face to put me on blast on my phone, by text messages, by email, by snail mail, on Facebook because that’s not fun at all even if I do agree with Jenny that it’s about writing whatever crazy shit you want to write and having some people say “YES! I THOUGHT I WAS THE ONLY ONE” and some say “What the shit is wrong with you?”

See? I have my reasons sometimes even if I know that everyone everywhere wants to know every little thought that pops into my head…the littler the better. Okay, perhaps not the whole world…perhaps just my kids, my parents, my family, some of my friends, my readers…and the occasional visitors from Russia, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and the Czech Republic. So at least right now I am not blogging like a zestful necrophiliac…read The Bloggess’ post if you haven’t yet…but as long as I have an adventure that I imagine is worth sharing, I will be sharing for sure…even if there is no one to see it.

And to prove that point I will share this with you.

The awkward that is a 7th grade school portrait because everyone’s 7th grade portrait is all kinds of awkward. Except my favorite son is such an adorable, handsome kind of 7th grade awkward with his gritted teeth smile. He told me that he smiled like that so everyone can admire his braces.



sometimes it’s just a resting bitchy face

So there I was sitting at my kitchen table, checking my email while waiting for a scheduled phone interview from a reporter. The appointed time passed and, thinking that perhaps she is running late and will be calling any minute now, I started to do other things like check my Twitter feed, pin some more stuff on Pinterest and check out what my laptop camera can do. Of course it’s the perfect time to take a selfie!

Hmmm…good hair day…I’m going to use this for my Facebook profile picture because…why not?

Yes, I was still waiting for that reporter to call me.

And then…

Are you okay?

I’ve seen that look before. Hope Bill isn’t in too much trouble.

You look so sad.

Praying you’re okay.

Am I okay?

Is Bill safe?

Should I be alone looking like this?

Am I in any danger?

What about everyone else out there?





It’s called a Resting Bitchy Face!!!

I’m fine.

Although I nearly died from boredom and general annoyance while waiting for that reporter to call. She never did and I am afraid that I might never get that hour back.

Perhaps I am not okay after all.

Thanks for caring.