FADE TO BLACK

Ambra Mae in repose. Pasadena, California. 18th day of April, 2014.

Farewell to Los Angeles.

My sweet Cindee helped me say goodbye to the city of angels in style. Last Friday evening we spent the evening at the Disney Concert Hall listening to the Philharmonic’s rapturous melodies. I love my Cindee. We always go on wild adventures together; from the theater, to the fair, to secret supper clubs, to bouldering. I love the adventurous hearts that we share. As a parting gift Miss Hadley gifted me with a box of fancy rainbow colored macarons from Bottega Louie. I was in a state of bliss, and completely moved by the gesture. It was the quintessential farewell to the city I’ve loved for the past six years. Thank you Cindee.

Furlough.

New York was life altering. I’ll forever cherish the quality time that Ambra and I spent with the Cottrells. Amber and Seb are the kindest, gentlest souls I’ve ever known. Sundays were my absolute favorite, because we always spent the entire day together as a family. And usually, we would have a chocolate peanut butter shake delivered to us as a night cap from Bare Burger. Can you believe that?!! Everyone delivers in NYC! It’s incredible.

Our last days in the Empire State, we really tried to soak in the beauty. Spring was truly trying to make it’s presence known. Although it actually snowed two nights before I left. The flowers and warmer days made my heart happy. Promising a new season. A change in the air.

I met so many lovely people in New York. I loved working at Forager’s City Table. The dreamers, lovers, movers and shakers of Chelsea worked and ate there. I made fast friends with the lot. I was stunned and taken a back by their generosity and support rendered in my direction. My last week chef comped brunch for my family and my last supper. Which was hands down one of the most decadent meals of my life.

I love you New York. You taught me how to grocery shop with a two bag limit. You showed me that a class system is very much alive and well. You taught me about all the important bakeries in Manhattan. You taught me to ride the subway like a pro. And most importantly, you taught me to avoid any moisture on the sidewalks. Because it’s ALWAYS urine. Every single time.

Until we meet again.

I have the most incredible people in my life. From sea to shining sea. One day remaining in New York.

The final days.

This week was a bummer. I cried. Frequently. I’m having a hard time facing the future. There were moments when I didn’t want to get out of bed because I felt such overwhelming sadness. But I did it. This little girl depends on me. And she deserves a strong mama.

The last five days have been filled with exercise and outdoor activities. I’ve been keeping us active. And Amber has been enforcing the very same. She’s such a terrific friend. Our rigorous schedule is partly for Ambra. But mostly for me. The sunshine and warmer weather have been such a welcomed help mate and respite from this cold winter. Both literal and figurative. I have three days left in New York City. My heart is full. It feels like it weighs a million pounds. The truly tough days are rounding the corner. But I remain bolstered by my village. I’m granted courage. I can do this. I got this. We can do this.

the shape of being.

I look so very much like my mother today. I’ve been thinking about her frequently as of late. I’ve considered how she raised me alone. Without any aid from my father. Whom I’ve never met. My mother worked and toiled to meet our needs. She gave her best for my future. I don’t know where she found the strength and courage to propel herself forward. But she managed. Love moved her tired feet. The older I get, the more I respect her sacrifices.

Today was tough. Hell, yesterday was a struggle too. My life is about to change. And I’m really and truly starting to feel it. The impending week looms ahead and weighs down on my heart. It’s beautiful and disarming how the world continues on while my existence unravels. The sun still rises. People continue to laugh and catch cabs. Lovers kiss. Candles are blown out with wishes attached to them. Life continues. Just as it should. I continue on.

Somehow, I’m inching forward. With love guiding my heavy feet. I manage to find buckets of reasons to be grateful for this life of mine. My daughter, prayers, and my incredible friends and family being chief among the list. All will be well and right as rain. Of this I am confident.

Ambra’s Book Club.

We have four more books to induct into the club. Our absolute favorites were Mostly Monsterly and The Dot. Happy reading to you and your favorite toddler.

1. Mostly Monsterly by Tammi Sauer. A sweet tale of a not so scary young monster who finds the balance of being true to herself.

2. Scaredy Squirrel by Melanie Watt. The story of an overly cautious squirrel who learns to loosen up a bit.

3. The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds. Through the support of a marvelous teacher, Vashti learns how to find her artistic groove.

4. A Walk in London by Salvatore Rubbino. Take a tour of the Buckingham Palace, and learn about Old Ben from the comfort of your home.

As always, let me know what you and your kids are reading. I love your suggestions.

Meet Amber’s answer to loose leaf tea; The Mana”tea,” everybody’s favorite Floridian. Absolutely silly. But, endearing nevertheless.

I worked at LGO and the Luggage Room for over five years. That’s the longest job I’ve ever held in my life. I made some incredible friendships through LGO; Kira, Vanessa, Rachel, Anna, Ramsey, Dennis,  Heather, Allison, Ashley, Sandy, Maurisio, Chris Miller, Chris M2, Lisa, Erin, Francis, Jeannie Lee, Victoria, Amanda and John G. to name a few. 

These fine people toasted me when I landed gigs, they cast me in their personal projects, they covered my shifts so I could go on vacation, they invited my husband and I to their Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, they threw me a shower when I was pregnant with Ambra, and best of all-they supported me and loved me. 

A few weeks ago I received the above text from John Gentry. Months ago I made a dry erase community board for the Luggage Room. It had menu/policy changes, gigs and announcements, and my favorite; an inspiration section. Because all of us served tables and bar tended to supplement our bigger dreams. I always took care of the board. And, for a month it was left untouched in my absence. I left my job without saying good bye. And many lovely co-workers continue to reach out to me, to let me know that I am loved and missed. Thank you John. I teared up at this text. View high resolution

I worked at LGO and the Luggage Room for over five years. That’s the longest job I’ve ever held in my life. I made some incredible friendships through LGO; Kira, Vanessa, Rachel, Anna, Ramsey, Dennis, Heather, Allison, Ashley, Sandy, Maurisio, Chris Miller, Chris M2, Lisa, Erin, Francis, Jeannie Lee, Victoria, Amanda and John G. to name a few.

These fine people toasted me when I landed gigs, they cast me in their personal projects, they covered my shifts so I could go on vacation, they invited my husband and I to their Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, they threw me a shower when I was pregnant with Ambra, and best of all-they supported me and loved me.

A few weeks ago I received the above text from John Gentry. Months ago I made a dry erase community board for the Luggage Room. It had menu/policy changes, gigs and announcements, and my favorite; an inspiration section. Because all of us served tables and bar tended to supplement our bigger dreams. I always took care of the board. And, for a month it was left untouched in my absence. I left my job without saying good bye. And many lovely co-workers continue to reach out to me, to let me know that I am loved and missed. Thank you John. I teared up at this text.

New York has persisted at being a solemn blue-gray. These photos celebrate that decision. My daughter and I continue to make adventures and outings between my work schedule. Making time for art, parks, playgrounds, treats, and nature between rain showers. And sometimes, even then-we’ll weather the storm.

A fantastic series of witty witticisms spotted in Brooklyn. Which one is your favorite?

It snowed as I walked home from work tonight. I forgot how silent the world is when it snows….even in New York City. View high resolution

It snowed as I walked home from work tonight. I forgot how silent the world is when it snows….even in New York City.

I have lived in New York City for five weeks. I enjoy living here quite a bit. I particularly appreciate residing and working in Chelsea. A lady will NEVER get hit on in Chelsea. Because the men in this pocket, are definitely seeking other men. It reminds me of the safe days of attending a women’s college. But having men in my theater program. Gay men are clever, confident, and kind. And always shower others with support and praise. It feels great to get a compliment from a homosexual male. Because I know that it’s legitimate, and coming from a genuine place.

I am an auntie! Happy Birthday baby Mason. Those darling cheeks….I can’t. View high resolution

I am an auntie! Happy Birthday baby Mason. Those darling cheeks….I can’t.

Cabin fever.

We spent the weekend cooped up in the apartment. Which was such a shame since the temperature rose to the fifties. Ambra caught a bonafide NYC winter cold. I kept her warm, kept the tissues coming, and supplied bowls of hearty chicken noodle soup. After the third day of movies and coloring, we were getting cabin fever. So, we went out for a small trip to The Garage Antique Flea Market. It’s small but mighty in terms of treasures and curiosities. There were some gorgeous pieces that slipped through my fingers. Including the perfect silver and turquoise necklace that I’ve been dreaming of. At $795.00, that piece remains a dream. Zoinks! I look forward to checking out the other flea markets in the area while I’m in town.