Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Quick Read

You know the book I'm about to write about - it is everywhere.  Everyone is reading it, people are writing articles about it, it is all the buzz.  I had a networking lunch the other day with other professionals in the area, and it came up there.  Friends text me and send me notes about the book.  I had my virtual book club discuss it.  Yes, I am writing about 50 Shades of Grey.

It is funny how everyone I know who reads the book gets something different out of it.  It is like a train wreck that no one can put down once they start it, even though the writing is mediocre at best (sorry E.L. James - I still loved them all).  Many people get the guilty pleasure of reading an erotic novel (which most people have never actually read).  Beyond that, though, there are other messages in the books (particularly if you read book 2 and 3, which have a much more fleshed out story to them).

One friend of mine read them and really felt that the entrepreneurial spirit of Christian appealed to her, and she is thinking of starting her own business (which hopefully will be as successful as Grey Enterprises Holdings Inc. is in the book).  Another one pointed out that at its root, these books are the evolution of two people and their relationship (which makes sense to me).  Others (particularly my fellow singletons) got hope that they may find the man who can easily buy them Christian Louboutin's.  

So, what did you get from it (because you know you read it...)?   

Thursday, June 14, 2012

40 Years of Wedded Bliss

My parents are celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary this year.  Their love, friendship and support is evident in everything they do - from holding hands, to making sure to kiss each other good night each and every night.  I think the fact that I am still single helps me appreciate their love and joy that much more.  

The kids (i.e. my sister, brother, their spouses, and me) put together a party for them this past weekend. It poured the night before the party, and the day started out rainy, which made me a bit nervous and neurotic (particularly because so many people wanted to join us).  By noon, the skies cleared and it was a gorgeous day.  The rain actually kept the bugs away for the afternoon.  Turns out, this is exactly what happened on their wedding day.  There are some angels up above blessing their marriage!

As we were putting together the guest list and reaching out to their friends and family, it became so evident that my parents are loved by those around them.  Everyone wanted to join in the party, brought a dish to share, and had a good time.  Those that couldn't come sent heartfelt notes about how much my parents mean to them.  As their children, we know they are amazing people, and it is amazing to know that everyone else sees this as well.  

It's no surprise, though, that they are so well respected.  Both of my parents are retired but work harder than most people with a full time job.  They volunteer their time at a variety of organizations, and they always follow through on their word.  

I hope I make the kind of impression on people that my parents do, and I hope some day I will be celebrating a special anniversary with a special person, still holding hands.  

Love you mom and dad!!!  (and for those of you who are wondering, I wore flip-flops)


Monday, April 30, 2012


I try to avoid talking about it.  If I don't talk about it, it isn't real, right?  Since I was a teenager, I have been dealing with alopecia areata.  For those of you who don't know what that is, it is periodic baldness, usually bald spots in the back of the head.  I hate this, for obvious reasons.  I'm a girl, and a girl's hair is an intrigual part of her identity.  So I have been playing with how to style my hair to hide this "condition."

I know, I know, this is a minor thing to worry about - it is a non-life threatening bump in my life.  I could be losing my hair because I am fighting cancer.  I know a young woman, a good friend, who was brave enough to shave her own head when her hair started thinning out due to the chemo she had to undergo to treat her breast cancer.  Would I be that brave?

I don't know if I would be, but I like to think I would.  In the meantime, I explain to every new hair dresser why I have a large bald patch on the top of my head (which is the first one I've ever really struggled with hiding since my first spot when I was 16), and plug along.  So, due to a LivingSocial deal, I am trying some new treatment.  Some lasers, some product, lots of faith, and fingers crossed.

So why am I going public with something I've hidden for half my life?  Because at my consult for this leap of faith, I cried almost non-stop.  Everyone was super nice to me, although someone needs to tell them their walls are too thin, as I heard them explaining how upset I was.  The thing is, I am upset about having alopecia, but I'm more upset about having to admit it.  And I'm scared that I am not overcoming this on my own.  I don't want to have to get help.

There are two vivid memories I have about opening up to others and hearing scary things.  My uncle, who has alopecia as well, told me I could easily lose all of my hair and it won't grow back (which has happened to him).  Someone I thought was a good friend reacted to me opening up about my fears of losing my hair by saying that he had never thought he would have to worry about a girl losing her hair; now he had something else to ask his girlfriends as they started dating.  What - I could be totally bald someday?  What - would I repel guys with this?  (my uncle was well intentioned - my "friend" was being an ass)

So I didn't want to seek help - I want this to go away.  I may be bald one day (hopefully a really small possibility) - but there are great wigs out there.  If I repel a guy away, he wasn't worth it anyways.  So I'm trying my luck at something new - I'll keep you posted on how it goes.  And now you know my secret...

Thursday, February 23, 2012

A Plea

Ok - I'm weighing in on the birth control issue, or my issue with the amount of energy and slander coming from it. Here is what is driving me absolutely nuts - men! Very few women are part of this debate, and that is super annoying to me. In today's world, where we are facing serious financial issues, violence, hunger, and other much larger issues, why are we wasting so much time on whether or not women should take the pill? I know at the root of this debate is the government mandate that Catholic organizations provide health care that covers birth control. Now I don't think anyone should be specifically mandated to do anything at this level - but I am not going to go on about my thoughts on this, because I don't have enough time and I'd lose half of you before I finished this post.

Here is what I truly want to talk about - the politicians, the religious leaders, and even my friends on facebook, that feel the need to talk about this issue are pretty much all male. Males who have never actually experienced the joy of menstruation (something that birth control pills can make much more manageable for most women). They have also moved away from the true issue to preach about the evils of birth control (because most people who are vocal about this are on this side of the argument). For every online blog post or article you can find about the dangers of birth control I can find one about the benefits (many of which have nothing to do with actually preventing pregnancy). You find an article that it increases the risks of some cancers - I can find an article about how it reduces the risks of others ( I won't do this, though, because the actual issue here is not about a medication that is widely used.

My plea is this - stop using something that is a very personal choice for women to build your political platform or religious beliefs. As a practicing Catholic, I know that forgiveness and love are supposed to be the true meaning of this religion, so spreading half truths that can be hurtful for some, and make them second guess their choices, isn't fair. If you don't like the government mandate, fine. Stop turning it into a debate about the evils of birth control and stay focused on the main issue at hand. Lent started yesterday - maybe some people can give up focusing on and going on and on about choices they have never had to personally make and they can put some of that energy into helping others who truly need some help.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

5 Days, 6 Women, No Drama

I just returned from an extended weekend away with the girls. We went to Vegas and it was awesome!!! None of us are serious gamblers, and some of us had never even been to Vegas. There were a ton of "we have to see this" and "oh my god, look at that" moments and we walked up and down the strip. We celebrated a good friend's birthday, did some people watching (ok, we did a lot of people watching), ate good food, drank some adult beverages, spent some time in the spa, and played some slots. The one thing we didn't do - we didn't fight or bicker. It was a drama free weekend, at least among us.

I found this so refreshing in a world full of drama. We could just spend time together, laugh a lot, and have a blast. If you don't know who you can do this with, look around. Find those friends who make you a happy person, an honest person, a better person, and hold on to them tight!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Ridiculous Pink Shoes (That I Love)

I love having friends that keep me grounded. I am truly a blessed individual, and I know it. I don't just have friends who make me feel better when I am blue (although they do that), but also friends that tell me when I'm being ridiculous. On a shopping outing the other day, my friend pointed out to me that I am willing to start a conversation with a guy I'm interested in, but as soon as it starts to look like it could turn into something more, I freeze up (and she jumps in and tries to help me). It got me thinking - why in the world do I do that? The easy answer - I'm scared of the change a relationship would bring into my life. I'm scared of being hurt, blah blah blah. I'm being ridiculous again.

So, my friend opened my eyes to something I didn't want to see, and it is something else I can work on. In the meantime, I went out and bought some gorgeous (and slightly ridiculous) pink sequined shoes. It will be hard to freeze up when I am wearing some stunning shoes! Cheers :-)

Friday, January 6, 2012


My horoscope today:

No one else is affecting your life but you. Do not give other people the power.

What a true statement! It made me think of people who say they are in a rut, or who complain about where they are in life. You need to remember that you are where you are because of the choices you made, which are choices you cannot change. Everyone makes choices that they may have not been the best, but you can make the best of them. If you are not happy, make a change. Don't waste time lamenting past choices you have made - make the right ones moving forward.

It is easier to blame others and circumstances, though, than to make a change (which also equals risk). I can change my life - not anyone else. I can choose to eat healthy and work out, or I can choose to sit on the couch. I can go up to that stranger and say hello, or I can be shy. I can forgive those that hurt me or I can hold a grudge. Everyone has choices and control of their life - the big question is what are you going to do with that power (the wrong answer is give it to someone else...)

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Years

It's January 1st - the day for making resolutions (many of which won't last to the end of January) and reflecting on the past year. We have a general belief in our family that odd years are harder than even years, so 2012 should be a great one! In all honesty, 2011 wasn't that bad, minus a few bumps, which means 2012 can only be amazing!

What will I remember when I look back on 2011? I will remember graduating with my MBA (or at least walking before we finished courses). I will remember my dad having surgery and then quitting smoking cold turkey (yay dad!!!). A fun trip to Colorado with good friends. A random snow storm in October followed by a super warm winter (40s on New Years Eve). An amazing friend and family member giving us a health scare, but coming out unscathed. A good friend's wedding. Hair issues. Lots and lots of blessings. Lots and lots of family and friends and support. Wine nights :-)

It was the year I was supposed to find love. One year ago, my brother-in-law filled out an online dating profile for me (that I never truly activated, because I didn't have the time or energy to make it worth my while). I know, I know, I need to make time for dating. I'm still not activating that account... So I can't add finding my true love to the list of things to remember from 2011 - but you never know what 2012 will bring! Either way, I can add the word love to the list of things that I will remember in 2011 - the love of all of the amazing people in my life.

So as I sit here and remember 2011, I also sit here and think about all of the possibilities of 2012. So my resolutions - I really really really want to run a marathon. My friend and I are going to start training and tackle this together (fingers crossed my knees hold out). That's my big resolution. I also resolve to appreciate all of the good things around me and not focus on the bad. Mindset is more than half the battle. Resolution #3 - take risks. I am definitely guilty of staying in a comfort zone, which is not going to bring about change, and (I know, cliche and all) change is good.

I'm excited to see what this year will bring - how about you?