The snow falls, each flake in its appropriate place. ~ Zen proverb ~
That’s what it feels like. A beautifully bewitching soundless shelter, muffled voices and cars and barking dogs. Silence. It’s like living in my very own Chanel snow globe. (Of course, the reality might be that my 102 degree fever from the flu is making me a bit crazy. On that subject, I used to have this very special blanket that would make me feel 100% better when I was sick and I really miss it. Sad.)
But here I am in the snow. SNOW!!!!
The Japanese have a word for the sound of snow falling.
It’s shinshin (say sheensheen). The word “shin” means silence or, more accurately, the absence of sound where there was sound before.
So “shinshin” is more of a feeling than anything else, a protective blanket of silence. The enchanting sound of silence.
Physicists say humans cannot hear falling snow; the pitch is too high. Wolves and bats can, which may be why right before a snowfall they seem to disappear into shelter.
And then more and more and more snow, covering cars and houses and the streets and trees. So clean and fresh, like white sparkly frosting on everything.
It’s been years and years since I woke up to the magic of a snow-covered world.
I stepped out into the pure and awesome whiteness of it, snowflakes settling gently on my face and hair, and I recall the wondrous and extraordinary exquisiteness of being alive. It made me want to twirl around and around with outstretched arms, at one with the cosmos. (I did.)
Snow was falling,
so much like stars
filling the dark trees
that one could easily imagine
its reason for being was nothing more
MARY OLIVER, “Snowy Night”, What Do We Know: Poems and Prose Poems
I took video of the gigantic snowflakes but my free WP account doesn’t allow vid uploads, so I hope these pics capture the glory.
PS If anyone wants to gift me that Chanel snowglobe, it really exists. Google it.)
Every day starts at around 5:45 a.m. It’s nonstop talking unless he’s eating or sleeping.
“Grandma?” Which really sounds more like “Grand-maw” if you’re sounding it out.
“I’m hungry. Let’s go in the kitchen and I’ll sit on the big stool and watch you make my breakfast.”
“Grandma? Why is it still dark out? Why do you love seashells so much? Can I have this rock? Why do you cut up my apple like that? Why do you make me oatmeal? Why is the stove hot? I burned myself one time and Mommy put ice on it. Why do you put cinnamon in it? I wish I was in a rocket ship and could fly off to space.I didn’t wet my bed last night. I’m wearing my Batman undies. Look, Grandma, look at me. Why do you love me so much? I’m your first little boy, Daddy is your second little boy. Right, Grandma? Right? Grandma, are you making coffee now? Why do you do that? That’s the same kind of coffee you get at MY house. We have a Trader Joe’s there, too. Is this safe, Grandma? (As he jumps from the chair to the sofa, and back.)
“Be ever so careful, my favorite boy!”
Silence as he’s eating his breakfast. But not for long…
“I’m really smart, ammnt I, Grandma?”
“Yes, T?” “Is that a TV screen? I only get to watch it for special. When do you watch it, Grandma? Why are you so small, Grandma? Daddy’s big and you’re small. You’re my little Grandma. I’m going to be bigger than my Daddy soon. Like when I’m six or twelve. I will, I really will. I’m not kidding. For reals. My Dad is SO strong, right, Grandma? Why did your little boy grow up, Grandma?
That one got me. “Hmmm”, I said. “I think about that too, T. Sometimes I wish Daddy was still a little boy and then I think that he grew up so he could have a little boy like you and make me so happy. What do you think?”
“I think….I think that I want a breakfast burrito now. I’m still hungry.”
Yup, he’s his Daddy’s little boy, that’s for sure. No doubt about it.
The questions have been coming fast and furious as soon as he turned three.
It started with ” where do sloths live?” and I said, “Let’s go to the library tomorrow and do some research.”
The next day we went to the library and checked out a few book about sloths.
After that it was “let’s do research” about everything that had been cooking in his brilliant little mind.
“I love the solar system, my favorite planet is Neptune, I love Neptune because it has rings. We live on planet Earth. I want to know about astronauts.”
Another trip to the library; more books. When he learned that astronauts wear diapers in space, he had to repeat that fact at least a hundred times.
“What happened to dinosaurs?” “Why aren’t there dinosaurs anymore? Why are they only in museums? Why are they just skeletons now?”
“What’s lightening?” “How does electricity work?” “How does a volcano erupt?” “How do bees make honey?”
That question couldn’t be answered very easily with a book, so we did something really special: computer research. We found a video that explained it in a way a toddler could understand. I have to admit that I didn’t know exactly how bees made honey and what we learned made me appreciate the importance of bees even more than I did before. For example, did you know that forager bees have two stomachs, one just to capture the pollen that will eventually turn into honey? Or that some of the jobs that other bees in the colony have is to vomit the contents of their stomach into a succession of about twenty other bees’ stomachs so that certain chemical changes can take place? Or that all the bees work together to flap their wings and evaporate the liquid when first placed in the comb and that when the liquid becomes thickened—well, that’s the end product—honey. In order to produce just one pound of honey, 2 million flowers must be visited. A hive of bees must fly 55,000 miles to produce a pound of honey. One bee colony can produce 60 to 100 pounds of honey per year. An average worker bee makes only about 1/12 teaspoon of honey in its lifetime. I’m THIS MANY YEARS old and never knew all of that. It took a brilliant 3.5 year old child to teach me!
Finally, my very observant little grandson said this… “Why don’t you eat meat, Grandma?” When I gave him a simple answer about how I love animals and don’t like to eat them, he said he didn’t like to eat animals either. His mom told me that later that afternoon, he asked her why Grandma doesn’t like to eat animals.
I’m so grateful to be able to generate a thought process like that. We are in desperate need of his generation to make the world a better place. Kinder, more compassionate. More empathy for all living creatures with whom we co-exist on this planet and learn to become better stewards of our oceans and the air we all breathe.
He’s so adorably exuberantly awkward in his joie de vivre. But me? I’m beyond exhausted with so much to be grateful for this Thanksgiving.
I was going to dip my toe into the world of writing from my gut, shining a light into my tortured personal journey as I stumble through the dark–I was GOING TO DO THAT.
But instead of spiraling down into that sad place, I grabbed my keys and drove into the village, deciding what I really needed was some therapy; retail therapy. Always the joker, the self deprecator; that’s me!
After a very rainy day yesterday, today was warm and fresh and shiny.
As soon as I walked into one of my favorite consignment shops, I spied a box of scarves and hats thrown haphazardly on each other like a pile of puppies. My eyes were drawn to a familiar brown and tan monogram on a scarf. I thought to myself, “it can’t possibly be authentic, but let’s take a closer look.” I picked it up. Hmmm, it sort of felt like silk. I checked the price tag. $12.00. TWELVE DOLLARS? It can’t be a real Louis Vuitton. Or could it?
I asked the salesperson, “Has this been authenticated?” She told me the owner didn’t think it was real so it wasn’t priced as a genuine designer. YES I WILL HAVE THIS, I told myself. Just then, my bad mood cleared up. I was firing on all cylinders.
One of my hidden talents is the ability to sniff out authenticity. Too bad that talent doesn’t extend to people, but that’s another story.
When I got home, I examined it more closely. The monogram was accurate, it was beautifully sewn, and I found a hidden tag that confirmed my suspicions- 100% soie Made in France. Yup, deffo genuine LV. SCORE!!!!!!
I also tried on an amazing St. John’s knit dress that I really really wanted, but even at resale prices, it was a bit too expensive, so I reluctantly put it back.
As I was meandering through the aisles, I spied a wall display. Draped over the shoulder of a red sweater was an oversized black and white houndstooth scarf. My eagle eye spied the logo in the corner: DIOR. Hold on, girl. Acting like it’s not a big deal so that no one else would want it…I grabbed it off the hanger–the original sales tag was still attached. It was 100% cashmere Christian Dior!!! And it was $20.00. TWENTY DOLLARS! How could I say no? This beautiful shawl-like wrap needed to be rescued. By me.
Instead of continuing to dwell on the things that weigh down my heart, these little treasures helped to cheer me up–perhaps merely a superficial bandage, but sometimes that’s all it takes to shake me out of a despondent mood. At least for a little while. Until next time.
I’ve seen most of the greats: Margot Fonteyn, Maria Tallchief, Rudolf Nureyuv, Galina Ulanova, and Mikhail Baryshnikov with Natalia Makarova.
THIS version of Swan Lake with the Russian Ballet Theatre did not disappoint!
The RBT production captivated us with Russian traditions while adding new choreography, hand painted sets, and beyond beautiful hand sewn costumes.
Getting ready! Lots of excitement in the air. I love to sit close enough to hear the sound of toe shoes on the stage.
The California Center for the Arts in Escondido was packed; it’s lovely to see a great response to ballet. This was the opening night of their US tour.
Olga Kifyak as Odettel/Odile accomplished the Holy Grail–I believe we counted 32 successful fouettes, which is every ballerina’s fantasy to attain. Olga owned the stage with her powerful and ethereal dance and the most amazing extension.
Head Jester Mikhail Ovcharov seemed to fly through the air with his cabrioles and grand jetes–a definite audience favorite.
PLEASE check out the tour schedule below and don’t miss it!!!
For those of you who need a refresher about Swan Lake, it’s based on a German fairy tale. Tchaikovsky’s score tells the tragic but timeless love story of Prince Siegfried and a lovely swan princess named Odette. Under the spell of a sorcerer, Odette spends her days as a swan swimming on a lake of tears and her nights in her beautiful human form. Odile is the black swan, and of course there’s a happily-ever-after ending.
She was named after my wonderful mommy. What an amazing honor!
I can only imagine how happy she is up there in heaven or wherever her free spirit has taken her. She died when the original Angel Boy, was only about seven years old, so she never was lucky enough to see him get his PhD or get married or be the best daddy ever to Angel Boy 2.0.
Check out these photos of Theo and Charlotte 3.5 years apart. They look like twins! That’s strong DNA for sure.
So far, her only accomplishments are eating and sleeping. Big brother looks intrigued…
Do you ever take a moment or two out of your busy day or before you close your eyes at night and wonder who in the hell Princess Rosebud really is?
So do I, my friend, so do I.
Toward that goal, ponder upon this for a while. The following might give you (and me) some valuable insights into my intimate gray matter. (Not Fifty Shades of Gray, maybe only about three or four.) Or not. You decide.
I bought two dresses. I love them equally. I hung them side by side to admire them and I’m looking at them right now and I’m loving so much about each of them for their individual intrinsic qualities.
One is a Lilly Pulitzer. a tried and true real designer brand that I could wear anywhere and be appropriately attired. I love the sleeves and the sassy outrageous bright colors and the dynamic print. It speaks of shiny happiness to me. I also love that it’s XXS, which soothes my poor body image issues. In my convoluted and distorted mind, I feel that IF I fit into an extra extra small size and it’s loose on me, then no matter what or how I feel on the inside, I can’t be ginormous, right? (Not that I’m body shaming anyone as this is my own personal issue.) With a spiky highhigh heel or summer-y espadrille, this is a sexysexy dress cos it’s super short, too.
The other dress is a treasure I picked up at the Buffalo Exchange in Ballard when I visited Angel Boy 2.0. It’s Forever 21 (which is EXACTLY how I feel on the inside. Arrested development and all that…) I love everything about this dress too: the muted burgundy and black/tan colors, the print, the little buttons, the tassels, and the vaguely Elizabethan/hippie empire cut with the billowy long sleeves. With leggings and adorable boots, I can’t WAIT for autumn.
One dress cost ten dollars; the other was on sale and cost less than one hundred dollars. Equal love. Money didn’t factor into the love.
Two shades of Princess Rosebud. There are a few more shades to my personality, but none of them are too extreme unless you start counting the number of seashells adorning the walls and shelves of each and every surface. Hence the title of my blog…
On another totally unrelated subject, many thanks to whomever sent me the package of thongs! I don’t normally wear Calvin Klein underwear cos I love silky things next to my skin, but they are super cute. A mystery gift giver, how awesome! Or…stalky. Hmm…
If I took a poll, I surmise that most females will agree that there’s trial and error in learning how to walk in high heels. A learning curve. I realize that not everyone likes to wear stilettos; some may even feel that it’s another indication of how we women are oppressed and repressed, and I can certainly understand that point of view.
But not for me.
I swear, and my mom would agree if she were still alive, that I begged and begged for my first set of heels when I was three years old.
Santa Claus brought them for me (we celebrate Christmas AND Hannukah lol) The little high heels arrived as a set with a faux mink stole and tiara, but it was the shoes(OK, I admit it, and the tiara) that became as natural to my persona as my curly hair and snarky repartee.
Yes, I was an extreme girly girl. I mean, did you ever stop to think of why I refer to myself as Princess Rosebud? My dad first started calling me Rosebud cos it’s similar to my IRL name, and after the tiara became part of my daily fashion accessories, it was only a matter of time before I became royalty. I’d always felt that I was born into the wrong family and this was all the proof I needed.
I really wish I hadn’t lost the tiara…I could still rock a sparkly rhinestone tiara, I know I could.
But here’s my dilemma.
I can walk for hours in heels and I don’t care if they hurt my feet, either.
But I can’t for the life of me, walk in flats. I’ve tried, I really have, but I don’t know what to do! It’s such a quandry.
I’ve practiced…but HOW? Do you shuffle? Kind of like shuffling bare feet through sand at the beach to avoid a jellyfish sting? Is it a heel/toe movement? Do you bend your knees? When? I just don’t get it at all. I feel very awkward in flats.
Even cute ones like the vegan Tory Burch’s. The Jimmy Choos are the worst. I mean, they’re super cute, but it’s impossible to figure out how to walk gracefully. It’s not a pretty sight, trust me. Even the less expensive ones don’t work right. They’re comfortable, that’s for sure, but I am definitely challenged. I keep buying more and more shoes in case I find the magic formula, but I haven’t found them yet.
There are many YouTube instructional videos–“How to Watch in Heels and Stilettos” –but nothing for flats. I guess I’ll have to only wear heels or suffer the embarrassment of lumbering and shambling down the street.
I love to meet famous people. I’m fascinated by them…their fame, their accomplishments, their notoriety, and how they did what they did to become recognized by strangers. I wanted to be famous but I’m not. Sigh.
Over the course of my life, I’ve met a few people of fame: (in no particular order) His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Jim Morrison, Captain Paul Watson (Sea Shepherd), Bob Hope, Marty Feldman, Rob Reiner, Chuck Norris, Gene Wilder, Peter O’Toole, Al Gore, and a few more I can’t recall right now, but as I’m thinking about it, I see that it appears that I’ve only met famous men and most of them are now deceased. Hmmm, I will have to reflect on what all that might mean at a later date.
I ALMOST met Sir Paul McCartney on Saturday night, but it didn’t happen ‘cos the person I was going to be with got sick and he was my conduit to Sir Paul. I was THAT CLOSE. For real. Sigh again. I really wanted to chat with him, vegan to vegan. SIGH.
But now there’s a new level of FAME to achieve in YouTube videos, whether it’s a cooking show or how to apply makeup properly to achieve that perfect smokey eye — or how to identify and heal from narcissistic abuse.
Last week, I had an opportunity to meet someone who has a certain level of international FAME from his YouTube videos that spawned books and coaching and speaking engagements.
Richard Grannon, also known as the Spartan Life Coach, was in my SoCal area. He’s from the UK and has a huge following on YouTube and social media. With a background in Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP), he graduated with a BSc in Psychology from Aston University, his coaching modalities employ Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Zen meditation, Hypnotherapy, Systems Thinking, Classical Psychiatry and Psychodynamics and Stoic philosophy.
What I found to be super cool about him is that he also developed a globally recognized brand with his company streetfightsecrets.com which combines simplified applied psychology with self protection concepts.
What that means to me is that you can learn to beat the shit out of people who attack you, while at the same time understanding their motivation for being horrible and mean. A win-win for sure!
Did I mention that he’s really charismatic AND a VERY good looking man? Well, he is. And he’s funny and says “fuck” a LOT, which is a plus in my book.
Notwithstanding the fact that this pic doesn’t look like me one single bit AND my hair isn’t even that color, it was a cool encounter with a famous person, that’s for sure, but there’s more!
The room was packed and as I looked for a seat, I did a double take when I noticed ANOTHER YouTube famous celebrity. We chatted for a bit during a break and she’s just as lovely as her videos portray her to be.
Sheri is a psychotherapist helping to provide support on difficult topics including abusive relationships and ways to recover. She has a BS in Political Science from UC Berkeley and an MS in Counseling from California State University, Fresno.
“I have spent years of my career working passionately for the disadvantaged, traumatized populations. My goal is to shed more light on the nuances of abuse and trauma in the hope that some people can gain some healing”
So…tell me…who have you met that qualifies as being FAMOUS?