Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The Lady In Yellow

She sat next to me on a crowded, skinny, two-seater airplane. She was a larger woman and I noticed her at the gate, thinking quietly to myself that she looked unsure. I wasn't feeling a hundred, so when we got to our respective seats I sat down quietly and closed my eyes. I noticed during take off that she had closed her eyes too. As I stated before, the plane was narrow and crowded so the fact that the larger woman sitting next to me, the lady in yellow, had her elbows in my gut became something that I knew I couldn't control.

Yet I didn't mind. 

As I restlessly slept on the plane I would open my eyes every now and again and looked at the woman next to me. Her skin was as dark as a bar of chocolate but it was luminous and beautiful. Her two-toned dreadlocks were swept up into a bun on top of her head and the sea shells that were expertly woven in between the locks made her appear much more stylish than that of a woman her age. Her fashionable leopard print scarf let me know that this woman knew exactly who she was and what she wanted to look like. But it was her smell that got me.

She smelled like my childhood.

She was chewing on bubblegum that smelled exactly like the bubblegum of my childhood. And that scent? It was so pleasant. I found myself wanting to put my head on her shoulder because she felt safe. The fact that our arms were smashed together because of the close proximity of the small seats didn't bother me at all. I liked her yet I hardly knew her. She was a woman of faith. I could tell because with her she had a 1997 biography of the Reverend Billy Graham and she opened it and began to read it while we were on the plane. I thought it adorable that before we took off she asked me exactly how to put her cell phone into airplane mode. I showed her where to find it in her settings AP. Obviously it was important to her to conform to the rules.

I must have been coughing a bit, because she asked me if I was OK, and asked me if I had allergies. I told her I had been visiting my son in college. He was sick with an undiagnosed strep throat that was mistaken for allergies. It had proceeded over the weekend into a full blown, swollen throat so painful that he could hardly swallow water. The fact that my emergency trip to North Carolina that Sunday to take him to the hospital was not lost on her. We agreed that I spent the most contagious 24 hours with him and I told her I hoped that I would not get sick also. 

We chatted a bit about being a mom and that when your child is sick, it's no matter where you are; you go. I found out she was from Kenya, just visiting relatives in NC and stopping briefly in my home town of Boston before flying to Amsterdam then on to Nairobi. It was her first visit to the United States. She had 3 grown children, each living in different parts of the world, and a new grandchild. I told her jokingly as we landed that she could now add Boston to the places in the US she has been, even for a short time. I helped her with the bags she had stowed above our seats, and I wished her a good trip and safety as she traveled back to Kenya.

Then I said goodbye and walked away from the Lady in Yellow forever. 

But I still thought about her. I'm thinking right about now she must be landing in her homeland, hopefully safe and tired. Maybe her children will be waiting to greet her as she arrives, maybe not. But I want her to know that somewhere, someone is thinking of her and hoping she makes it home safely. 

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Mommy Dearest.

Would it be considered "over parenting"? Lately I have been guilty of taking on the problems of my grown, somewhat adult children? This is a new sensation to me because in the years leading up to now, it was my JOB to take on the problems of my kids. Now that Frick and Frack are 20 and 19 respectively and out of the house, I find myself obsessing over the silly little day to day stuff that they complain about which really has nothing to do with me.

For God's sake wouldn't you think I have better things to worry about??

Yet here I am worrying and thinking about their small stuff. Things like social issues, romance issues, the influence of peer pressure, academic pressure and I worry that they are unequipped to deal with these things. Despite my worry, they seem to be handling the world without me just fine, and its not like I am constantly calling them or texting with my advice. I silently think about their stuff and find myself wondering how they may have handled a situation, ever careful not to let on that I have been worrying about it. Sometimes I think I worry about their crap more than they do.

I finally realized that despite what I think, my children are equipped to handle these minor navigations through their lives. Dare I say it, it's probably good for them to handle these things alone, even though I don't want to admit it. I have taught them well. Then it dawned on me-maybe they are happy? Maybe something that I may not agree with was actually born out of a choice. A choice that they made for themselves to keep their lives in harmony. After all, it is their life to lead.

It's never easy, this parenting thing, is it? But I realize that no matter what I'm not going to change who I am. I just have to learn to let them be who they are. If they want my advice, they'll ask for it and I will be ready and waiting to give it. Yes, hard as it is I'm going to have to learn to keep my mouth shut when it comes to my kids and their small stuff.

Whether I like it or not.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015



Where are you? Why have you forsaken us?

Breaking Bad,
I miss you. You were my best friend for a while and I will fondly remember our time spent together.

You can't please some of the people all of the time and I respect the fact that you are trying. Making  history isn't easy. The question remains; is it enough?

Our love/hate continues. Will I ever have the advantage here? I doubt it but recently I have learned a thing or two so look out.

Why are you so fickle? I guess that's why I am addicted to your ebbs and flows. I'd like a clearer picture on the future. Could you throw me a bone here?

I have been neglecting you a bit. Someday's life gets in the way so it's not always what we agreed to. I will try to be better about us.

I am proud of you. You did real good yesterday. Even in the cold, raw and unrelenting rain. You persevered and showed your mental strength. We truly are Boston Strong.

Key West,
You are so beautiful. Thanks for last week.

I love everything about you. You are the world's best dog. Your loyalty, love and presence are some of the most precious things about home. Thanks for being at my feet every day (even when you don't want to) I'm sure you can sense that sometimes I need it more than you do.

With Much Love,


Friday, April 17, 2015

I Was Just Thinking...

The past few weeks here in Boston have seen some serious court cases brought to trial. Most notable, Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. We all knew he and his brother were responsible for the carnage caused by the homemade bombs that injured hundreds and killed 3 people. A 4th victim, was killed in cold blood by the Tsarnaev brothers. In a stunning admission, his lawyers conceded "it was him" in their opening statements, so the guilty verdicts reached by a jury last week served as more of a solace than a surprise. But his defense attorney's strategy has always been about saving his life-saving him from the death penalty. 

I'm not sure how I feel about this.

The same jury that sat in judgement will next week hear arguments next week intended to save the young Tsarnev's life. A life he will spend the entirety of incarcerated, a prisoner of the American justice system. His fate rests in the jury's decision. Live or die, according to the law and a jury of his peers. In a way I feel like this kid wants to die. To him, his brother died a martyr, and he has claimed in his blood scrawled writings on the wall of the boat he hid in that he would like to die a martyr too. By sentencing him to death, are we in fact granting him his wishes? Would justice be better served by making him live out the rest of his long life in the same four prison walls? 

The parents of the youngest victim, 8 year old Martin Richard, have publicly asked for the death penalty to be taken off the table. In a letter published in The Boston Globe, The Martin family believes that a death sentence will bring about years of appeals and "prolong reliving the most painful day of our lives". They ask the US justice system to end the story without death, without parole and without appeals so that they can begin to rebuild their lives. I have to agree with them even though I think that if allowed to live incarcerated, it will be not the last time we will hear from Tsarnaev. 

Will justice be served with a death sentence? I'm not sure.

What about Aaron Hernandez? Was justice served in that case? 

Last week a jury of his peers convincted him of first degree murder in the death of Odin Llyod. In this case there was no admission of guilt, no murder weapon and no clear motive, but the jury felt that the circumstantial case presented to them was strong enough to convict in the first degree. The sentence is life without the possibility of parole. Was justice served? Probably, but I can't be sure. I think Aaron Hernandez is a bad man who let his money and athletic power go to his head and I think we will soon  find out that this is not the first time he has killed someone. It's tragic, how may lives have been destroyed because of Aaron Hernandez and his swagger including his own. 

Justice may have been served for the victims and their families but the truth is justice will never bring back the loved ones lost. The reality is that there is no justice in that.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Destination Vacation

Destination on the Magical Mystery Tour Part 3???

Key West, Florida!! It was an amazing weekend with lots and lots of sun, fun and the usual debauchery that comes along with being part of the Toxic Trio. A quick recap?
Thursday night, we arrived around 7PM after a day of flying and immediately had dinner in the hotel restaurant which is situated on the beach at the southernmost point of the state! Key West just happens to be 90 miles from Cuba, and is indeed the farthest south you can get in the USA. The Southernmost is also the name of our hotel! The thing about Key West is that even though you are in Florida, you really don't feel like you are in Florida. Key West has this awesome island feel that makes you believe that you are somewhere in the Caribbean.

The pool bar just to the left in that photo was our next destination on Thursday night, and we closed out the evening in perfect Trio fashion: cocktails, friends, photos and fun! Friday was a spectacular day, weather wise, it was in the high 80's and we spent the day at the pool relaxing and making merry. The sun was strong and hot and we got plenty of sun kissed color on our bodies. We had arranged a sunset booze cruise, so we told the Trio to be ready by 5:45.

After some Pirate photo ops-complete with earrings and eye patches, we boarded the boat. The band on board was the first indication of the next two hours of fun and safe to say that the Trio ladies hijacked the boat and held court on the dance floor! We held a limbo contest and even dressed other people up as pirates with our props. Some people even thought that we worked for the cruise company! The scenery was perfection and the sunset didn't disappoint! We left the boat and retired to dinner on world famous Duvall Street. (remember the clue:Robert Duvall?) So many bars, restaurants to choose from, we chose outdoor dining and engaged in people watching for the rest of the evening.

Saturday was another gorgeous beach day and the guys managed to find a new obsession: Wallhooky!
Who would have thought the men could find so much fun with a hook, a brass ring and a piece of string? We then rented an electric car that seated six, perfect for the Trio and we were off to explore the island.

First stop was lunch at El Siboney Cuban restaurant for the locals favorite and then off to the Hemingway House. Earnest Hemingway was a very famous Key West resident whose home has been turned into a museum of sorts, and we toured the old home complete with the many cats that reside there. FUN FACT: the many cats that roam the property freely are direct descendants of Earnest Hemingway's first cat, Snowball, that was given to him by a Massachusetts fisherman decades ago. Hemingway was a complete dog-we found out-as he was married 4 time in his life, seemingly to women his wives had introduced him to. We had a wonderful dinner at Louie's Backyard, which is smack dab on the beach. The fine dining was some of the best food we experienced on the island and the atmosphere was incredible!

Sunday funday was another great beach day! The Trio spent the day playing Wallhooky with the world famous champion, Barcode-who was touring the coast trying to promote the sport. It was Sunday Funday for sure because the Trio got very tipsy spending quality time at the pool bar with Barcode and the boys and almost missed our dinner. We made it of course, and because it was our last night we just HAD to experience some Duvall Street night life and we chose, of course, Sloppy Joes, as our final destination for Key West night life.

Sloppy Joe's is a historic bar in Key West and its most famous patron was Earnest Hemingway himself!
The drinks and the music were flowing freely by the time we got there and I'm not quite sure we ever left the dance floor! The band was awesome, the patrons were just as crazy as one would have thought they would be in Key West and we danced until the wee hours in the morning.

Monday reluctantly came and the Trio boarded the plane to head back home, but not without heavy hearts.
We were just grateful that no one came home from vacation on probation..

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

The Magical Mystery Tour:Part 3

Hey bloggers! It's that time of year again..
Time to embark on our storied tradition of mystery travel with the Toxic Trio. This is our third year of the mystery trips and it is our turn to plan the events of the long weekend. In case you aren't familiar with what I am talking about I'll give you a quick bit of background:

  • The Toxic Trio are a group of 3 couples that we are a part of and spend lots of quality time together making merry and crazy wherever we go. Believe me when I tell you we have been kicked out of only the finest establishments.
  • This tradition started back in April 2013 and you can read about our first trip HERE and HERE.
  • The next trip which was last April 2013 and was a great success! You can read about that trip HERE and HERE.
  • The idea of the "mystery" is to provide the other couple with clues, so as to try to understand where we are going without really knowing where we are going.
This year it is up to us! My Guy and I have planned a fab vacation destination for the Toxic Trio to converge on and enjoy some quality drinking/fun time together. Last night we had our kickoff dinner, to get our Trio Trip vibe on, and as always it was a wonderful evening for all of us! We are definitely getting pumped for the weekends events!

Before I try to tempt you to solve our Mystery Tour riddle, I need to let you know that I will be leaving on our Mystery Trip tomorrow, April 9th, 2015. I will not be returning to the bloggersphere till Tuesday, April 14th, 2015. On Tuesday you can all find out if you guessed the right destination.

These are the clues we provided:
  • We will be traveling in the United States-no passports are required.
  • The destination will be warm, so beach attire and light clothing are a good bet. 
  • We will be taking 2 planes to reach our destination. (remember-I live in Boston)
  • And the last clue was this:

Good luck guessing bloggers! I'll see you on the flip side!! That is if I survive...

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

A Gem Of A Tool

After the longest/ snowiest winter on record, I can report that everyone is feeling dry all over. The most obvious place would be our skin. Yes, the skin is tapped out from the climate conditions but our hair has also take quite the beating with all the cold. Dry, brittle hair that lacks any moisture from the atmosphere has left my clients complaining about the look and condition of even the glossiest and most supple hair. Conditioning treatments are great and can nip your hair dryness right in the "split end" bud, but the best way to combat the brittle fly away's is to incorporate a tool into your daily routine that actually uses patented technology from a gem stone to make hair it's healthiest.

The T3 Line of hair care tools are the most technologically advanced that money can buy and they use one ingredient to actually produce healthy hair. Tourmaline.

Tourmaline, a semi-precious stone is also known as the "electric stone". When heated, it produces negative ions that translate into healthy heat. T3 Hair tools use crushed tourmaline which they infuse into the internal tool components, resulting in the healthiest way to style your hair. It actually cuts your drying time in half! Along with a patented technology called  SoftAire™, T3 Hairdryers use negative ions in the air flow to cancel static and quickly seal the cuticle. The results are amazing! You will see a reduction in frizz, and increase in body and shine, and hair that is easier to comb through and manage.

And who doesn't want greater, more manageable hair? Shed the winter dull and dry hair and try something that can actually produce a shinier, healthier looking hair. This one is a true gem!  It's a bit more than you may expect to pay for a hair tool, but the life expectancy of the T3 product will guarantee your money's worth.  I highly recommend it.

Friday, April 3, 2015

It's A Really Good Friday

Three blondes died in a car crash trying to jump the Grand Canyon and are at the pearly gates of heaven. St Peter tells them that they can enter the gates only if they can answer one simple religious question. The question posed by St. Peter is "What is Easter"? 

The first blonde replies, "Oh, that's easy! It's the holiday in November when everyone gets together, eats turkey and are thankful..." "Wrong!, you are not welcome here, I'm afraid. You must go to the other place!" replies St. Peter. 

He turns to the second blonde, and asks her the same question: "What is Easter?" The second blonde replies, "Easter is the holiday in December when we put up a nice tree, exchange presents, and celebrate the birth of Jesus." 

St Peter looks at the second blonde, bangs his head on the on the pearly gates in disgust and tells her she's wrong and will have to join her friend in the other place. She is not welcome in Heaven. 

He then peers over his glasses at the third blonde and asks, "Do YOU know what Easter is"? The third blonde smiles confidently and looks St Peter in the eyes, "I know what Easter is." "Oh?" says St Peter, incredulously. "Easter is the Christian holiday that coincides with the Jewish celebration of Passover. Jesus and his disciples were eating at the last supper and Jesus was later deceived and turned over to the Romans by one of his disciples. The Romans took him to be crucified and he was stabbed in the side, made to wear a crown of thorns, and was hung on a cross with nails through his hands and feet. He was buried in a nearby cave which was sealed off by a large boulder." St Peter smiled broadly with delight. The third blonde continued... "Every year the boulder is moved aside so that Jesus can come out and, if he sees his shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter." 

source: http://www.jokes4us.com/holidayjokes/easterjokes/threeblondesjoke.html

Happy Easter Bloggers! Here's to spring!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

American Movie Idol

Scott Eastwood

So I'm watching TV the other day and a trailer comes on for the new movie, "The Longest Ride". And I stop dead in my tracks for a second. All of a sudden I'm mesmerized by the male lead in this movie. Like I really had to stop and look at this guy. I thought, 'who is THAT?' because I couldn't believe how handsome this kid was. The movie, aimed at the younger than I generation, looks to be another hopeful contender to be the modern day "The Notebook", but my curiosity got the best of me. I Googled the movie and quickly found out that this handsome kid, whom I have never seen before in any tabloid or on TMZ.com, is none other than Scott Eastwood. Yes, that same Eastwood of the Clint Eastwood fame because he is his son.

I then text the authority on the subject, Frick, my daughter.

MOM: OK so Scott Eastwood "the longest ride"? Seriously? The dude is like Tom Brady handsome and I never thought anyone could ever come close




MOM: Umm yaaa


MOM: It was a Zac Effron moment.

FRICK: I feel YA

FRICK: I feel the same way. Three of the most handsome men ever.

The Zac Effron thing is a reference to a time not so very long ago when Frick was a little girl watching "High School Musical" in her bedroom. I came in to her room to discuss something important with her and while I was speaking I glanced over at the TV and completely lost my train of thought. I went silent and I said, "Who is that? He's so handsome."

Silly me-I get distracted by beauty.

And a beauty he is. Just like his father, Clint Eastwood, who was at one time an American movie idol and  not just a two time Oscar winning director. In fact, back in the day Dirty Harry was positively swoon worthy and a major Hollywood sex symbol.

The legendary Clint Eastwood

Yes, good genes run in the family because it would seem that this kid has what it takes to take it to super movie idol status....and I'm an old lady and he stopped me mid blink.