Recently I had a conversation with some random person who told me his ten commandments for life. I decided to come up with my own.
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Rule number one: Show up. If my life had a motto, this wold be it. I have used it to get me through many a tough time. Sometimes life is crazy and scary and completely out of control. Your just want to hide and hope it will go away. Take this magic little pill: just show up. You don’t kneed to know what to do or how to do it. Just put one foot in front of the other, and the path will reveal itself. I can’t tell you how many times  this has gotten me to where I needed to be.

Rule number two:  if it makes you happy, do it. Selfish? Maybe. Is that so bad to put yourself first? I’m not talking about doing something that is going to hurt someone. You are hopefully wise enough to distinguish right from wrong. I’m talking about following your bliss. Care about how you feel. If you don’t, who will?

Rule number three: Do what you can while you can with what you have. Tomorrow the money might not be there, the health might not be there, or the opportunity. The time is now. Don’t waste it. Tell the ones you love you love them while they are still around. Eat the donut(s). Do that thing. You know what I’m talking about: THAT thing. You will never live this moment again.

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Rule number four: Forgive. My dad always used to say, “forgive and forget.” Well I’m not Jesus, nor do I have Alzheimer’s, but I found that forgiveness is actually possible. Learning that was nothing short of a revelation for me. Sure forgiveness the most beautiful, amazing, life-altering, and soul lightening gift I have ever received. Bitterness is poison that only we taste, not the person we are mad it. If time and distance from your situation allows, do it (see rule #3).

I always thought that phrase, “forgiveness is the gift you give yourself,” was a bunch of crap. It’s not.

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Rule number five: Trust that the Universe is working in your favour, and everything is going to be okay. Better than okay my lovelies! There was a time when I couldn’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. I genuinely thought my life was over. Things were so bad that even if I could have whatever I wished for, my head wasn’t even capable of finding the wish that could right the wrongs. I don’t know how it happened exactly (I think it has a lot to do with rule number one), but I’m ok again. No, it’s not perfect, but it’s beautiful in its imperfection, and I am indeed okay. So will you be.

Number six: Be what you want. If you want love, give love. If you need peace, be a source of peace for someone else. If you need help, help someone. Try it. It will make you feel good in the process.

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Rule number seven: Show gratitude. Become aware of your many blessings. Train your brain to find the good. There will be days when this feels close to impossible, but there is always something. There is the warmth of the sun that shines on your skin, and your two eyes that open every morning. When you can appreciate those things that we often take for granted, life gets a lot sweeter. When you are aware of the good, the universe rewards you with more good.

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Number eight: Know that you are powerful. Yeah, it doesn’t always feel like it, but you are. You are the number one player in this story that is your life, and you decide how things go. Don’t make yourself small, the victim of unfortunate circumstances. Act when you feel inspired. You know what to do, deep down. Do it. Don’t let life just happen to you.

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Number nine: Embrace your weird. It’s okay to be different. The wold would be a pretty boring place if we were all the same. Let your weird light shine so that the other wierdos can find you. Wierd is a side effect of awesome.

Last but not least: Be kind. Sometimes that goodness you need isn’t there, but maybe, in some small way, we can give that goodness to someone else who needs it. I guess this is very much like #6, but it’s more focused on radiating good without the need of getting anything back. The world needs that. Even if you can only do that by giving a kind smile or by telling someone they look pretty today, be that person. You never know what kind of power a small kindness can have. Maybe your small light is the only light someone gets on a really bad day. I can’t tell you how many times a small act of kindness can ripple into something huge.

What about you? What would your rules be?

IMG_8137.jpgI’m often come across talk of “soulmates,” about how there is that one someone special out there for everyone. Every shoe has it’s perfect match, apparently. I could probably just be content with someone whose company I enjoy, though obviously I do wish for more. I want the fairytale, if such things even exist, but I’m not holding my breath. Nothing and no one is perfect, so I’m not holding out for that. I get really disheartened at times when I see what’s out there though. I have dropped my standards when it comes to what I expect out of a man, but I refuse to let go of them completely. I shouldn’t have to. 

About a week ago I was excited when a fairly okay looking doctor (but who I suspect is balding since his pictures seemed somewhat strategically cropped) reached out to me. Let’s start off with a little snippet from his dating profile…

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Sounds good right? Perfect for me.

We exchanged numbers and texted a bit. He didn’t seem anything like the guy in the profile. Actually, the man was pure and unadulterated asshole. Here excerpt from our conversation…

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Well, to make a long story short, we did not meet. I was completely put off.

So, as far as soul mates are concerned,  I accept the responsibility of being my own. The way things are going down, that’s the only choice I really have. And I got to tell ya, I’m getting kind of awesome with the way I treat me. I think I’d make a fab boyfriend! I didn’t want me to feel sad on Valentine’s Day so I did all sorts of lovely things for myself. I am loving myself in the way that I would like someone to love me. I guess that’s the next best thing. Admittedly, it’s a far cry from having a romantic partner, but I’m not going to lower myself to the degree where I’m going to waste my time with a butt wipe, whom I imagine is probably a racist and a Trump supporter (yeah, I totally made that up in my head, but I believe it wholeheartedly). The spirits of my female ancestors did not manifest in my soul so that I could be the foot stool for some fuckwit’s feet. This much I know. Therefore, if I can’t get kindness and respect from a man, I shall give it to myself. In the process, I have decided that I may just ridicule the douche bags that cross my path on my blog  … because, hey, it’s kinda fun. And if I wasn’t able to laugh about it, I’d probably cry. Those of you who know me, know that I do that too. A bit less often these days, but it still happens.

So how did I treat myself on Valentine’s Day? I bought myself a lovely Marc Jacobs tote. It is perfect for work. I plan to use it as my everyday bag. It has this gorgeous bright red interior that makes me feel happy every time I open it. And guess what? I didn’t even buy it on sale. I just treated myself to exactly what I wanted when I wanted it. It was a bit pricey, but whateva. I also ate some delicious buttery shortbread. One by one, I polished off the whole box. For dinner I made myself one of my favorites: wings. I make mine in the oven. It’s an easy recipe: 1 part honey to 1 part harissa (Moroccan spice paste) which I brush on to the chicken once it is cooked and crispy, then back in the oven another five minutes. The trick to getting them crispy is to pat them as dry as possible when raw, salt them, and then cook them on a high temperature on a rack that allows the fat to render. No oil. Nothing is as good as fried, but this is a very satisfying alternative. Try it, tell me what you think.

I do acknowledge that there are good men out there. I have met a few. I know they actually exist, but I haven’t met the one who is right for me. Until then, I am in my own care. I want to do right by me. Partner or not, I hope you will do the same. Nobody will ever know how you need to be teated better than you. Be careful of what you tolerate because you are showing people what you will accept. Show them how it’s done dollies!

Lots of love and kisses to all my readers on Valentine’s Day. I love you. 

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Dating is so crap sometimes. Before it even gets to arranging to meet someone, you have to chat. And I’ve chatted with so many douchebags, that I literally have the urge to sew up my vagina sometimes. My list of deleted numbers resembles something of a telephone directory. So many men give so little and expect so much. Plus they have the attention span of a handful of peanuts. One day they are texting you sweet and silly words, the next day they have forgotten you exist. I KNOW I deserve more than that shit. And there is no fucking way I’m going to accept it. I’d definitely rather be alone … except I don’t reaaaaaly want to be alone. I want to share my life with someone wonderful and worthy. Sometimes I get so disheartened. Is there a guy out there who is right for me? Am I just too strange? I know I’m kind of niche— I’m not going to be everyone’s cup of tea. I figure I’m more of a matcha latte. Honestly, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love who I am and who I’m becoming. I’d just really like to “become” with an amazing man by my side.

There was this lawyer I went on a date with. He made a big freaking deal about me not being able to use chopsticks. A huge deal. I have only had sushi a few times in my life, so perhaps I do look kinda silly trying to utilize them, but why did he have such a strong desire to try to embarrass me? What ever happened to being a gentleman? Do you know why I don’t eat sushi much? I DONT LIKE IT. I put my likes aside to spend time with someone, and enjoy something THEY like, and I am rewarded with ridicule. Not friendly ridicule, but a purposely nasty kind of disdain. Nice, huh? Total troglodyte!

Here is a snippet of conversation I had with with another fucktard. Clearly he had only one intention in mind in trying to meet me:

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These are not uneducated men: a doctor and a lawyer. What they have in common is a lack of empathy, and an extreme sense of entitlement. Chivalry isn’t dead, it’s more likely to have been murdered and then drowned in its own tears. Common decency and respect is just sooooo over and outdated.

Tonight I’m having my second date with a man I shall call Derwood. Derwood is hot! He has the sexiest arms ever. Ever. He is quite charming in a strange sort of way, and I am wickedly attracted to him … but … well, he seems a tad dumb, if I’m honest, juvenile. Plus, like most men, his interest in me seems mostly sexual. I want to be with a man who seems to really want to get to know me, a man I can respect and look up to. I had so much fun making out with Derwood in his car at the end of date number one, that I made an exception, however. I ended up breaking my no kissing on a first date rule for him. So despite acknowledging that this probably has no potential, I am really looking  forward to seeing him tonight … but then I found out the movie he chose for us to watch is practically a kids movie *sigh.* No, I’m pretty sure Derwood is not “the one.”

And this is the general trend in my love life, my dear readers. I do believe the man I’m looking for is out there somewhere. I wish he would stop hiding. I’ve kissed enough frogs. I want something good and real… and soon!

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Fin DAC & Kevin Ledo collaboration in Wynwood, Miami

Hello my lovelies, I’ve not written in a while. Kind of been laying low. How was the start to your New Year? It’s not a favorite holiday of mine (because I always wish I had someone special to celebrate it with), but it was okay actually. I rang it in with one of my favorite treats: a Godiva chocolate covered macaroon. So yeah, not earth shatteringly awesome, but not bad. The good news is, I didn’t spend it feeling sorry for myself. That’s progress.

Since I last wrote, my friend T lost her battle with cancer. That was pretty major. But the thing is, it was inevitable. I knew it was going to happen. I just didn’t know when, and I was dreading finding out. When it did happen, I was deeply sad, but not surprised. She practically lived in the hospital. Always in and out, always breaking bones, and she had constant trouble with her breathing. At the end of her life, she was carrying an oxygen tank with her wherever she went. T was definitely a fighter though, and always hopeful.  Always making plans, assuming that there would be a tomorrow. I feel so blessed that my life path ran parallel to such an amazing and loving human being. She was my sister, just not by blood, and I will always love her dearly.

I’ve gone on a few dates, though nobody is worth actual mention. I continue to put myself out there believing that one day, it’s going to happen for me. It’s encouraging that at my age I still get attention from very eligible and attractive men. Last week a rather handsome guy took me to Wynwood to check out some street art and chow down on the uber fabulous fried chicken at KYU. I honestly can’t remember having better (this was my second time going). That sauce it comes with … well, that must be what people mean when they say “awesome sauce.” Chicken was followed by some deliciously sweet and fluffy coconut cake. I’m not sure what it says about me that I talk about the food with so much more excitement than the man. He was nice … meh … nice. I’m not looking for NICE, I want to FEEL something… you know? Like with the fried chicken LOL. Passion. I seem to be no closer to finding love since I last wrote, but I keep trudging on.

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As for work, its been crazy as usual, but I actually had a very good month. I must have been a very good little show pony, as I was recognized as the best on my team for December. Plus, two of my customers left me great feedback on good service I provided. I must admit, it felt great to be recognized. I really did work hard. I hoping 2019 might have a promotion in store.

And that, my dears, is really it. What’s been going on with you? I wish you everything good and sweet in 2019 and always.

Tons of love,

Caroline

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So truth is that I had a shitty week. Really shitty. My mom hasn’t been well (I kind of loathe to get into it, I find it kind of scary and embarrassing to talk about), work has been breaking my back (nothing earth shattering, but you know that can suck), and I have been feeling overlooked. I know we all feel this way sometimes. Different problems of course, but we all have moments where we need a pick me up. We all need to be reminded of who we REALLY are: powerful, beautiful, and limitless beings. 

Here are five ways that I tried to work on that today:

Awesome music: I have music that suits all my moods. There is some stuff that I listen to that’s totally hard and kick ass, some that’s goth and moody, and some that makes me feel very feminine and spiritual. We all have different tastes and different sides to our personality. One thing is the same for all of us though: music is some powerful ass magic. Sometimes you gotta put on your headphones (Bose, dear), block out the rest of the world, and loose yourself in sound. Just totally feel it. Immerse yourself into it. FEEL it. BE it. Dance if your wishes move you. Take your music out for walk or a run in nature if you are feeling it.  It’s all good.

I ate good food: Now, I’m not talking about bingeing, though we all know I am not averse to that (goddesses don’t regulate themselves, after all). What I’m talking about eating food that is good for you, but also delicious. A coconut macaroon won’t kill ya either dollies, not when they are from Godiva. Aside from my sugar laden Scooby Snack of choice though, today I also indulged in thick Greek yogurt covered in  a luxurious sweet honey that I’ve been saving for something special, and some incredibly tasty avocado toast with juicy tomatoes. Who doesn’t love avocados, right? I drink my special tea that I adore, and I just savor the flavors. 

I was selfish with my time: There are moments where everyone needs to kinda fuck off. They might be fabulous, but fuck off they must. And then there are people who really don’t deserve your energies. You know who I’m talking about. You are totally thinking about someone right now, aren’t you LOL? Sometimes you need to be selfish and be all about you, because we both know, nobody else will do this for you. Turn off your phone. Maybe lock the door to your room. Or maybe just get out. Today I became invisible for a while (though honestly, I don’t think anyone noticed–that sorta sucks, but whatevs).

I took a bath. Maybe it is because I’m a water sign, but there are few things so soothing as a nice bath (with a ridiculously overpriced scented candle—Walmart can kiss my ass. Frugality has no place when it comes to self care.) Bubbles or bath oil. It’s all good. Sometimes I lie there, just kind of motionless and feel the warm water around me. Sometimes I listen to guided meditations on YouTube. Just follow whatever your heart wants. Maybe some cookies? I don’t know, just sayin.’ If the crumbs get in the tub, it’s no biggie, they will all just go down the drain, so actually, it’s really pretty genius.

I made a face mask. When I was in NYC I stopped in one of my favorite little shops: Kalustyan’s. I’m not sure how I describe the place. It’s kind of like a witch’s cupboard of the weird and wonderful. It is a food store, but it sells these magical ingredients that you just won’t find anywhere else. This time, one of the unusual ingredients I purchased was Organic Rose Petal Powder… Now what would I do what that? Well I’m kind of obsessed with rose as a flavor, so I bought it, and I decided I’d figure it out later. After doing a bit of research I decided to make a face mask out of it. Supposedly, it is a natural skin toner. I mixed the rose petal powder and honey (full of antioxidants) to form a thick dark colored paste and slathered it onto my skin (after I tried to taste it … yeah, really). I left it on for a good 20 minutes, and then washed it off. Rinsing it off with water is a bit messy. But do you know what? It actually produced great results. I wouldn’t lie to you on this. My skin felt felt very soft and looked very fresh and healthy in a way that it does not normally. I am going to make this a weekly habit, as it feels quite indulgent, and I adore self care. If you can find this crazy ingredient, try it out for yourself. 

I want to also try adding little spoon of the powder into hot chocolate. Would it be as yummy as I imagine? Watch this space.

I think its super important to discuss how we pull ourselves out of negativity rather than wallow in it. Feelings are like visitors, they come and go, but sometimes the yucky ones will want to hang out just a bit too long if you invite them to tea. So let’s talk about this my lovelies, how do you vanquish the nasties?

Let me start with a recommendation of what NOT to do when you are in New York. Don’t go to Vu Hair at the Peninsula Hotel. DON’T!!!!  Do. Fucking. Not!!! Getting my hair cut in New York has always been a treat for me. I try to go somewhere special. It’s a little way I like to spoil myself. This time I was trying a lovely sounding salon on the 22nd floor of a grand hotel. It got great Yelp reviews. I was excited. Well… Moi was in for a nasty surprise. ScissorHands did not listen to me when I told him what I wanted: three to four inches off the bottom and layering on the side.  Instead, my almost waist long hair (when straightened) was hacked to little more than shoulder length (a good 8 inches off). I was devastated. Into the lobby bathroom I went, where I cried for about twenty minutes — well, if you are going to cry like a big baby, it might as well be in some fancy bathroom. It heightens the drama. Am I right?

I always thought my hair was the most special part of me, the thing that made me pretty. My hair has always been long. From childhood, I have associated long hair with beauty. So to have it chopped so significantly… it was both shocking and somewhat devastating. It’s just hair, I know, but somehow the end result felt so brutal. Yeah, yeah, “it will grow back,” they tell me, like this is going to make things better. IN A FUCKING YEAR!!!! I now feel as attractive as a sack of potatoes.  Maybe I shouldn’t be so vain. I am more than what I look like. I know that. But even now as I write, I’m still upset about it. Traumatic.

Fuck that though. I’m still gonna roll like a gangsta. Shitty hair be damned. I shall move from the worst part of my vacation to the best. I saw my first ever concert. Going to see Florence + The Machine was the main reason for my trip. I didn’t know what to expect. Yeah, I could have seen her closer to home, but why would I do that when I could see her in Brooklyn? Makes no sense. Was it weird that I was going alone? Maybe a little, huh? I was nervous. Dealing with the unknown is always a little scary for me, but at the same time, I try to be brave. I don’t want life to pass me by. Was I going to stick out like a sore thumb? Was it going to be just completely and utterly awkward? 

Actually my dears, it was awesome. Ah Florence… could I possibly be more in love? Words don’t describe it. Her angelic aura, her super powerful voice, the way she danced in her diaphanous gown and bare feet, her beautiful bright spirit that lit up the Barclay Center. She is just so utterly lovely. Mostly she sang songs from her newest release, “High as Hope,” but there were some of her beloved classics too. Magical my lovelies, magical. I sang (yes, me!) … I even danced (if you could call it that). It was so special, a memory I will cherish forever.

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Of course there was plenty of eating. You know how I do, dollies. But I mostly stuck with my old favorites, so I am not going to bore you with stuff I’ve already written about previously. Suffice it to say, weight was surely gained. Need a fat ass to balance my awkward coiffure, methinks. And then there was the street art.

I found five Invader pieces to add to Moi collection. That always thrills me to bits.

And then I have some other beauties to share…

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Random fabulous
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Gumshoe Art, aka Angela China
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Public art installation by Derek Fordjour
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Vandal Gummy
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Piece by Buff Monster, Brooklyn
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Not Bad For a Girl, Indie184
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D*Face — somewhere of off Lafayette and Broome Street

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I make really poor food choices when I go on holiday. It starts from the beginning, at the airport. I am not to blame. It’s Lakeshia. She is someone I shared a Diet Coke with in Salt Lake City. We started off with a gigantic peanut butter cup… and the games began. From the beginning of the trip, to its culmination… all poor nutritional nutritional decision making were solely hers. Got that? She is naughty. She makes me do bad things.

Really, I don’t know how to tell you all the wonderful things that happened on my eight days of vacation, and I loathe to try. I mean ugh. I’d be typing forever! I am not one for writing super long posts, and I am not one for reading super long posts, so I will be leaving out A LOT of stuff. This is just a sampling of highlights.

First let’s start with Oregon. Portland is all about food. It’s my kind of city for sure, so food is where I shall begin:

Pok Pok: OMG those chicken wings. Totally worth the hype. I swear it. They smell a little odd (it’s the fish sauce), but wow. There is this sweet and spicy thing going on that is just perfection. If it was just me and Crazy Kat, I might have licked the plate, but her husband was there, and he don’t know me like that (though I think he has an inkling).

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The lavender honey ice cream at Salt & Straw … swoon worthy. They have a lot of amazing flavors, from the weird (and I mean super crazy and kinda yuck sounding, like bone marrow!), to the wonderful, but the lavender honey is the one that gets my vote. There is something about that flavor that just completely does it for me. I should also mention that the people who work there are fab. It makes a good experience even better.

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I really am a piglet. That’s definitely my porcine digits you see holding that big old cone aloft. I don’t do things by halves.

The biscuits at this most adorable little shop ever, Lauretta Jean’s. Oh gosh, these were sooooo good. Perfect, simple, and decadent. Gobs of butter, and a touch of honey. I was in heaven. Plus I just adored the vintage setting and all of the irresistible homemade pies on display which seemed to speak to me in a way that only my very own piglet ears can hear. Really, the place was unbearably charming.

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After biscuits we went street art hunting, and Portland actually has a great street art scene. I discovered a new artist I love called Fin DAC. Check out how clever this piece is. The geisha’s hair is actually composed of live plants. I believe this piece is called “Gratitude.”

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And really, there are so much more art pieces worth showing you, but it feels strange to me to lump them all together. I feel like it starts to cheapen the specialness of each individual work, so I’m not going do do that. Again, this post is just about showing you SOME of what I found special.

International Rose Test Garden– beautiful roses as far as the eye can see. Portland is actually known as the City of Roses, so there is no better place for this garden to exist. Some roses gave off the most exquisite fragrances, while some smelled of nothing. It’s somewhat odd being surrounded by so much beauty, you almost become numbed to it after a while. Each rose is more beautiful than the next. It was a wonderful experience, a Portland excursion that should not be missed.  I imagine that the rose garden would be an amazing setting to get married in *le sigh* … maybe one day.  Or donuts, those are fine too.

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Blue Star Donuts… okay the huge and slow moving line? So annoying, yet it was worth it. I got to try every donut I wanted. I tried five. Hey… be quiet okay? It is so cool being an adult because you can eat ungodly amounts of donut and nobody will stop you. It’s the law LOL!!! My favorite was the orange olive oil donut. It was so good that I bought some for the return flight home… because I could, and by that point I was already super fat, so whatever. And by the way, I did also try Voodoo Doughnuts, because how could I not? Save your calories. Kitch factor galore and a good Instagram opportunity for sure, but so meh!

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Crazy Kat’s stunning beach house in Arch Cape is  a contemporary masterpiece. Wow, that place is beyond impressive. I love knowing that someone I love so much gets something that gorgeous. A queen deserves a castle… on the beach… with fabulous bath tubs. Sometimes nature is lost on me, but through a giant glass wall in a luxury setting, the sunset looks especially beautiful. I can see why her Instagram is always peppered with so many sunsets! While in Arch Cape, we went to Cannon Beach where I got to see Haystack Rock. It was a rock formation that was pivotal in finding the pirate treasure in the 80s film, The Goonies. I found treasure in Oregon too. Problem is, I ate it.

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And Seattle? Well, I believe the first thing we did after grabbing some chocolates at Fran’s was to head to the famed Pike Place Market: a rabbit warren of fruits, vegetables, “flying” fish and all manner of touristy knickknacks that you will never find a use for.

Fran’s Chocolate: I was desperate to try the famed Coconut Gold Bar that was featured on the Food Network’s “Best Thing I Ever Ate.” Chocolate and coconut is always a winner for me, but best thing I ever ate? Nope. I mean, it was good, but it wasn’t even in that vicinity. I did however find something in Seattle that did fit that bill though. It was a cake that will haunt my dreams forever. The Gateau Basque at a place called Sitka & Spruce. I die. Truly. I wrote to them to ask for the recipe. I do hope they respond.

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Of course I got to see the famous Space Needle. I like to think of it as the Eiffel Tower of the American west. It was right next to the Chihuly Garden and Glass where CK and I saw some stunning glass sculptures. Amongst all the gorgeousness, this one, by far, was my favorite:

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And of course I have to share some Seattle Street Art. D*Face was recently in Seattle doing an exhibit at Treason Gallery, and did two awesome murals, which I was only able to find thanks to CK. She is becoming quite adept at hunting street art. The first, “Careless Whisper” is not my photo, I just couldn’t get a good shot with all the cars that were parked in front of it. The second is of Kurt Cobain, who I consider synonymous with Seattle.

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I can’t possibly end this post without saying how much I adore Crazy Kat and her wonderful husband Blue Eyes (not to mention her two lovely boys which I finally had the pleasure of meeting). They are so kind and good to me.  I don’t know how I lucked out by meeting CK, but rather than question it, I thank thank the Universe for my good fortune. While I was there, it felt like every day was my birthday. Lots of love and thanks go out to you CK (though dear, you are an enabler, you totally let Lakeshia have her way… and we love you for it).

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Lavender lattes: it’s a full blown obsession now. I have to figure out how to make them.

Sorry I haven’t written much lately. Sometimes life just isn’t all that exciting and so there is no point boring anyone with the minutiae. All is well. Next month I should have a fabulous post to write. I am super looking forward to seeing Crazy Kat in Portland (I’ve never been that far west before), and hopefully there will be  a little excursion into Seattle as well. I adore CK, and I always have the best time in her company. If you read my blog regularly, you know how much I love to travel. I try to see a new place every year, it’s one of my goals. Food, art, and travel; these are my passions in life. When I travel, I usually get to satisfy all three, so there is really nothing I anticipate more than a holiday away from my little cubicle at work. And anticipation? In my book, that’s half the fun.

Things are going well at work. I have a new boss. She started several weeks ago, and so far she seems absolutely lovely.  It’s a pleasure working with her. My new team that I got moved to is awesome too. It’s all good in the hood. I actually just celebrated my two year anniversary with the company. That’s a record for me since being back in Florida. Truth be told, however, I’m feeling kind of burnt out. Work has been trying, and a break is long overdue.

So what else? Well I went on a few dates. Nobody worth pursuing romantically, but I did meet a guy who I developed a friendship with. He is very sweet, I just didn’t feel any sparks. I want sparks.  I’m not going to settle. I’d rather be alone than with the wrong man, and being alone is no longer feeling as burdensome as it used to. So this guy, I’m not terribly attracted to him, and his life situation is not conducive to a relationship, but he makes for an awesome friend. We text often and go out to eat every once in a while. It’s nice to having company and to  have someone I can be a bit silly with, but that’s all it is. We don’t do anything more than hug. This time around I’m a lot more selective. Do you know what else? These days I just tell a guy if I’m not feeling anything. Before I used to be so afraid of not hurting anyone’s feelings. Now I just tell them in the kindest way I know how, that I don’t want to pursue anything. And do you know what? I learned that most men appreciate this. Honesty really is the best way to go. From personal experience, I learned that there are few things worse than having your emotions toyed with, so this is why I force myself to be direct. Life is too short to do otherwise. I guess this means I’m learning to value myself better.

I guess you can say that these days I’m dating myself. I try to follow what makes ME happy, and frankly, I’m pretty freaking good at it. I might just be my best boyfriend evvvvvaaaaa. In fact, just yesterday I took myself out for the most delicious lavender latte at a charming little local tea shop called The Modern Rose. And today we (and I use the word “we” in the sense of the royal we) are going to the movies. I am going to watch Crazy Rich Asians – as we are in the mood for something silly and light hearted. There might be some chocolate covered Godiva macaroons involved (my favorite Scooby snack). Hey … come on… might???? You know they totally are involved LOL.

So anyway, just saying hi. Haven’t forgotten you. Didn’t slip into a black hole in the blogosphere… just laying low a bit. What have you been up to?

Tons of love,

Caroline

Things have been very even and quiet. Nothing monumentally exciting since my birthday post. These days, I’m happy to say, that although there are a few bored days, sad days have declined dramatically, which is completely awesome. Is it because I’m not stressing over any guys anymore? I wonder. As usual, I always try to find happiness where it’s available. I try to relish those those things and immerse myself in them as best I can . Here are some things making me happy at the moment…

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My MacBook Pro. This is my first post written from my very own computer. Although I have yet to get comfortable with all the features, I am loving my new laptop. I was told by a coworker (who used to work at Apple), that what I bought was way too sophisticated for my needs. Whatever dear, whatever. I like knowing that I have the best. It’s a big purchase, so I prefer knowing that by spending extra, I have future proofed my new toy. This little lovely ain’t goin’ nowhere. One of the coolest features is the little strip above the keyboard, the touch bar. Looks the freakin’ business even if I don’t know how to use it too well.

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Retail therapy: yeah, so on that note I do love spending a bit of money. When I’m down, my two go to’s are eating and retail therapy. I get that from my mom. Well hey, at least I’m not smoking crack with Satan, eh? I’m just ringing up charges at Anthropologie. They have some super cute stuff fright now. I got these adoreable chinos for work (which I’ve already worn), plus I bought a dress I liked. I’m waiting for it to arrive in the mail. I hope it fits right. Don’t ask me where I’m going to wear it, that’s irrelevant LOL. Originally it was $228 and I got it on sale for about $80. I adore the cute fish print.

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Rubios fish tacos: speaking of fish, I positively adore the fried fish tacos at Rubio’s. I’d say I’m becoming a regular. Yeah, it’s a chain, but what can I say, when it’s right, it’s right. The Fish Taco Especial? Sooooooooo right. I love the hot and crispy deep fried shell that surrounds the flaky pollock, I love the coolness of the avocado and the sauces they use. I love it how they make everything on the spot and everything is super fresh. Sure, grilled is healthier, and they do that too, but life is short. This is one of my go to’s when I am in need of a delicious treat meal. AND it’s cheap. These are $2 each on Taco Tuesday (though I usually save this for the weekend). These tacos are so much better than what I’ve had in much pricier restaurants. Get these tacos in your belly if this chain exists in your neck of the woods. These really are amazing!!!

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Nail Envy by OPI: I’ve never been one to really care about my nails. I’ve only gotten a manicure once in my life, and probably wouldn’t bother again. I keep my nails kind of short. I wear contact lenses, so it’s not really conducive for putting them in and taking them out. On occasions when I have tried to grow my nails, I haven’t been successful. They aren’t that strong and usually tear when I’m in the shower. Lately, however, I’ve been trying to focus a bit more on self care, and doing my fingernails and toenails is part of that. And you know what? This stuff actually works! It’s not terribly cheap ($18), but this product is definitely worth it. It gives a bit of shine, and my nails have never been stronger or healthier. I don’t intend to grow them long or paint them any colors (I’m not a fan of that look), but they do look very well groomed and kind of elegant. That makes me happy.

Yesterday I went to see Won’t You Be My Neighbor, a beautiful documentary about Fred Rodgers (aka Mr. Rogers), a man whose footsteps of love will echo into time. What an incredibly beautiful soul.  There is a saying I like, “The planet does not need more successful people. The planet desperately needs more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers, and lovers of all kinds.” Mr. Rogers was all of those things. His message touched me deeply. I actually cried several times. Despite that,  watching this movie made my heart feel lighter. I was inspired, and I was encouraged by the simple goodness that we all have inside of us. I know we all want to appear all worldly and cool, but if you think of it, isn’t simplicity and love the highest form of sophistication? Isn’t it the paired down, minimalistic truth of what we supposed to be as humans? I think so. I leave you today with my favorite Mr. Rogers quotes. Reading them makes my heart feel giant, happy, and hopeful.

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Today is the day I turn 43. All is well, and I am happy. Deliriously happy? No. I’d say I’m content and at peace. It’s been nice. Since my last drama filled post, there have been no crazy emotions. I’m feeling very even. I’m finally starting to relax and enjoy the stillness. Sometimes in a public place I might hear a phone text. I check my phone secretly hoping it is for me… it’s not, but I’ve gotten better at that part. Acceptance. One day, when the time is right, it will be for me.

I’ve been spending a lot of time in quiet self indulgence. I light my Diptyque jasmine candle, listen to soothing music, and concentrate on self care. I’ve been paying attention to my nails (something I’ve never done before), I have been using hair masks (another thing I never do), and I just do whatever it takes to show myself that I care for love me. I do things like waking up early in the morning to see the sun rise for the summer solstice. I’ve been spending more time in the company of women. I am learning. I am unfurling.

Slowly.

All is well. What I care most about these days is being happy. That’s my number one. So, today, on my birthday, I made a collage for you of little pictures I’ve been saving on Pinterest. Just things that put a smile on my face. I hope they make you smile too.

So what of the birthday festivities? Well, Friday was super sweet because at work my boss brought in cupcakes and balloons. My team sang me happy birthday and everyone gave me a hug. I felt so incredibly special. On Saturday I just kind of relaxed, did my hair, ate fish tacos and ice cream with my mom. And now it’s Sunday, my actual birthday. My mom special ordered me a strawberry and vanilla Carvel cake. In my family, there is no birthday without an ice cream cake. I ordered my Macbook Pro online. The big 15 inch one I wanted (to balance out the thighs, of course LOL). I’ll be going to pick it up at the Apple store at the mall, have a browse, and then its birthday dinner at my grandmother’s. She’s making ribs, a favourite of mine. She called me today to tell me how much she loves me. How lucky am I?

I may not have romance, but I am surrounded by love. My family, my colleagues, a few dear friends … the Universe has got my back!!! I have everything I need and so much of what I want. I know it will continue to deliver that which is for my greatest good and happiness.

*Birthday kisses to you all*

I love you.