Tag Archives: Family


28 Nov

While cleaning my room today, I found something that was very dear to me, and that I thought I had lost. There I was, digging through pockets of purses, trying to find these Christmas presents that I bought three months ago (which I also lost, but that’s another story), when suddenly, my fingers in a tiny side pocket felt not plastic bag, like I was wishing, but something sharp and cold. Brow furrowed, I dug deeper, trying to finagle whatever was in that pocket out into my hand. Finally, the mystery item sprung forth, into the palm of my hand – two tiny diamond earrings that have been missing for almost a year. I would have sworn I had searched every purse in that bucket, at least twice. But here they were, yielded by my favorite black bag I got from Lenox Mall just before my freshman year of college. I felt like Carrie, when she had given up for lost her Carrie necklace, only to find it in the lining of her vintage Chanel purse. My earrings, however, had last made an appearance New Years Eve, and in the following months filled with breakups, moving, and job upheavals, I had counted these tiny treasures as lost forever.

I love unexpected surprises. I also love searching for something and finding something else, something better. Especially something that I’d given up on. It’s one of life’s little awesome tricks, and I love waking up each morning not knowing that good thing may happen that day.

For instance. Every holiday, I have this image in my head of the family getting together and getting along, making whatever day one of those perfect, exciting holidays much like the ones I remember from my childhood. However, that’s silly, and I think this family of whom I speak stopped pretending to get along for my sake the older I got. And it hit me, after this Thanksgiving – why do I keep looking back, trying to recreate something that wasn’t even real to begin with? Why rely on others to make holidays happy? I’m looking around this world, trying to make something mine, trying to carve out my own little niche to make my own little home, and there is no reason why I can’t be in control of my own holiday happiness. So, next year, I am hosting Thanksgiving at my house, wherever I am. I am cooking. I am doing things according to my idea of what would make me happy and what Thanksgiving should be. And, hopefully, that would reduce the stress and resulting apathy of said family, making everyone’s holiday better. And though it won’t look like what I always thought it was supposed to look like, that doesn’t mean it won’t turn into something even better. Maybe, while looking for something else, we will find something even better.

Keep searching, loyal readers. Don’t rest until you find what makes you happy.



21 Nov

The season of thankfulness is upon us; Thanksgiving is in a short four days. It’s one of my favorite holidays – the smell of turkey and dressing, the sounds of football from the downstairs TV, and the way the trees have mostly fallen bare combine in my memory and create one of the best days of the year. I wake up early, and spend the morning smelling the turkey cook while watching Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. At noon, the women of the house converge on the kitchen, and there is hardly counter space for all the bowls and pans. Then, of course, there is food, an abundance of which we have, as we are a southern family. The sun goes down to leftovers and sleepy people, and there is always a Charlie Brown Thanksgiving in there, as well as the Lighting of Macy’s Great Tree, and sometimes the lighting of our own Christmas tree. It’s a good day.

I am thankful for much; it’s good to remember all year long, but sometimes we forget. It’s only human, as are we.

I am thankful for family, and for my boy, the latter of whom will become the first boy brought home for a holiday (I hope he’s up for the challenge). I am thankful for my friends, and for my little yellow house, and for Daisy and Walden. I’m thankful for my job, for my car, for the million little conveniences that I take for granted every day. I’m thankful I live in Atlanta, but also that I’ve traveled everywhere, in each direction of the world. I’m thankful that my real home is just down the road, and I can go there whenever I feel lonely or in need of a nice bath and some TV, along with some of mom’s cooking.

I’m also thankful that I also, as well as the boy, have the ability to cook. This evades some if not most people. I don’t understand; there are few things more gratifying and relaxing than making your own nutritious and delicious meal in your kitchen. My granite counter tops only make the deal sweeter, but I digress. I love chopping, and mixing things in bowls, so that is my job, always, when both the boy and I cook dinner together. Maybe this love of cooking is another reason I love Thanksgiving. Nanna, Mom, and I all have our dishes that we make; I love being in the bright kitchen, the smells and ingredients blurring together on the counter tops, laughing and drinking wine and taking pictures. Ah, family. Ah, wine.

So here’s the challenge this week, loyal readers. Find something unusual that you’re thankful for. What do you love? What do you maybe not love so much, but still feel incomplete without? Leave a comment!

Happy Thanksgiving, readers. I’m thankful for you every week, not just the last one of November.


18 Oct

Things I Love, This Week:

Watching movies in bed, with the cat sleeping beside me.
Sunny days.
Trees that are finally changing color.
New jackets from Old Navy.
Mother/daughter days.
Haircuts, which I will be getting tomorrow.

It’s a good habit to get into, naming the things you appreciate. It may make you appreciate them more.

But alas, I have my first cold of the season and I have to get ready for work. Readers, what do you love? What are some of the little things you appreciate daily?


30 Sep

I’m blogging early this week; probably because I can’t wait any longer to wax sentimental about the quickly changing season here in my city of Atlanta.

This time of year makes me feel alive. The temperature has been hovering around the 90 degree mark for the past three and a half months, at least. It’s hard here in the summer. You start to feel like you’ll never cool off, you’ll never be able to step outside without instantly feeling somewhat drenched.

Then I walked outside last night, to go home from work. The rain was still falling, though I could see light behind the trees in the distance. The temperature had cooled, I think into the 60’s, and for the first time all summer, I was able to stand and take a breath and feel complete; I had no desire to hurry to my car and crank the air conditioning, no. I wanted to stand there, arms open, welcoming in the season that had taken so long to arrive.

Today was even better. Sunny, 72, and Target had a bunch of Halloween things that I had to buy. This is my time of year. This is when I truly feel like myself.

The nights are getting colder…I step outside after work to a dropped temperature, a darkening sky with smears of red and pink, and a slight breeze. I drive home with the windows down, and when I get there, the smell of my next door neighbor’s wood burning fireplace greets me, and I take my time getting my things from the car just so I can breathe in that wintry smell just a little longer.

I wish the trees would catch up with the air. Alas, they’re still defiantly green, holding onto their color and refusing to grant me my favorite part of autumn. Ah, well. All in good time.

As an aside, Saturday marks the one year anniversary since my Pa-Pa had open heart surgery and received his pacemaker. He is doing wonderfully, completely back to normal, or back to better, if one can describe something as such. Those first fall days in 2009 were marked by hospital visits, late night intensive care meetings, and coffee runs for everyone. It was dark for a moment, but fall hasn’t let me down yet, and it’s as much a testimony to her glorious afternoons that he’s still here with us, having lunches with me and greeting me with hugs and smiles. No, Dr. Hyman, fall does not mean death and endings. It’s a chance for new life, for a fresh start, for new chapters, and for feeling alive.

(My pa-pa and my small one I nanny)


17 Sep

Happy sweet 16! Or, in other words, it’s my 16th post, which makes my dear blog one of those surly teens, who stalks about the house with its iPod buds permanently stuck in its ears, kicking at things, scowling. But I prefer to think of her as one of those slightly dorky but very nice girls, who sometimes wear glasses and reads a lot and can’t wait to get to college.

In light of being 16 weeks into my 24th year, or perhaps being 36 weeks away from being able to say I’m a quarter of a century old, I’ve decided to write about something very basic.

This is my desk. It used to belong to my mom, until I moved out and took it / she gave it to me. I used to do my homework on it in elementary school, and I think there are some pen or marker spots in the top drawer. Nevertheless, it is mine now (I think!), and as we all know, the desk of a writer is a very important thing. It can’t be too big, because then our ideas would be too spread out to be useful. But it can’t be too small, either, because then we couldn’t cross our legs underneath, and uncomfortable sitting just doesn’t make for good writing. The ideal size is cozy, with some drawers and hiding places to put things, if only to fish them out when you’re stuck in the land of writers block and are avoiding the page altogether. You can’t write when your thoughts are flying everywhere; the writer’s desk has to be a sort of home within the home, a place you can go to unfold your thoughts slowly, piece by piece, and lay them out out on an uncluttered, non-judgemental surface.

On my desk? My Paris box, which makes me feel all sorts of nice whenever I look at it. A picture of my family, which is, of course, the most important, as they keep me in food, entertainment, and good material. Pens, of which any good writer should be in abundant supply. There is always a spot for coffee, since there is always coffee. And finally, one of those little paper organizers stuffed with cards my girlfriends have sent me over the years, ones that always make me smile and make a note to call the sender later in the week. These things cushion me, they surround me, they make me who I am, and therefore, make my writing better.

So this is it! This is where the brilliance will hopefully one day spring from. I can’t wait for fall to really start, so I can sit here, drink my coffee, and watch all the leaves cover the driveway. Maybe I’ll be a real writer soon.


1 Jul

I made a list, once, of everything I wanted out of life. It didn’t include the cookie cutter marriage to the cookie cutter man, or children, or a picket fence in the suburbs. I was OK with that. I had my music, my writing, my ideas and dreams and hopes.

I’ve always loved being different, wanting and achieving different things that most people I know. Right now, out of the 12 girls who graduated from my high school in 2004, eight are married, and as of yesterday, three of those eight have children. I can’t imagine that being my life. I can’t imagine being 24 and having a ring on my finger and a baby in the other room that came from my body. Like I’ve said before, I want different things than this. I want to go to our reunion and have something to show for myself besides a ring and a baby. Those are not the accomplishments I want under my name.

Something shifted in me last month. It was sudden, quick, sweeping in and overtaking me while my back was turned, catching me unaware and leaving me blinking in the sudden new light. I want to be a mommy one day. I want to watch my belly grow and feel the tiny kicks and make the midnight trip to the hospital and bring home a tiny little thing and make a family. I do. And while this feels right, and I will do it one day, I still feel guilty, or confused, that my new life ideas include a tiny person other than myself. I wish to God I was one of those people who are different and live an alternative lifestyle. As much as I want that, I still crave stability and normalcy, too. It’s an interesting feeling, one that I grapple with sometimes every day.

Even Sex and the City told me I can’t have both. I can’t be a career woman and a good mommy. It doesn’t work like that.

I feel like I’ve turned a corner, though. I’m on my way somewhere else now, the shadows retreating swiftly behind me and the light coming from a new angle. Or maybe it’s just a relief at embracing the inevitable, at accepting destiny and fate and biology, whatever you want to call it. Whichever it is, it’s enjoyable, this change of scenery, and I’m hanging on for as long and as far as this train runs.


2 Jun

The original name of this blog was A Year in the Life, a not so cleverly disguised copy of my favorite song from Rent. That year ended almost six months ago. I’ve reached a stalemate in my mind. I don’t write enough; I feel a little guilty about that every day. But lately these guilty feelings have actually begun to inspire me to do things, instead of just sitting there sulking in my brain. I want to get out and do something, not just sit around and dream and make plans. I want to take control, make a difference, say I’m doing something worthwhile and real. Something tangible. Something that I can point to and say, “Yes. That’s mine. I did that.”

So today is my 24th birthday. Birthdays are important in this family – from the time I was born, great planning went into every June 2nd and it always turned out beautifully. Mom always went out of her way to make my birthday special. There was the time she surprised my friends and me with a limo ride around Atlanta, I think when I was 10 or 11. She turned the living room into Paris for my 20th birthday. And for my 22nd, I helped her convert the back patio into our own little restaurant, complete with little cafe lights and bottled soda in tin buckets.

We videotaped all of my birthday activities from the time I was born until I was seven. I watch them every year; it’s become tradition, and June 2nd wouldn’t feel quite right if I didn’t sit in my favorite comfy chair and watch my little self running around on the screen in front of me. It’s amazing how these days intertwine and all feel the same.

Mom and I just got back from lunch; tonight, we will hit Pozole, this amazing margarita bar in the Highlands, for drinks and dinner. I thought I’d finish this post now, before the warm buzz I always get from tequila kicks in. Another year down, this one much different from all the rest. School is over (for now), I’m working every day, I moved into my first place, I broke up with my first boyfriend. There’s so much material here, waiting for me to sort it all out into piles and start writing…waiting for me to find the common threads, to learn the lessons, to gain experience and knowledge. I think it’s finally time. Time…to stand up, or grow up, to step faithfully into the future and carpe the shit out of the diem. So here we go.