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Once upon a time I was in a VERY bad place. I remember being in London, wishing as I crossed the street that one of those big red busses would run me over. I remember crying in Sainsburys (a supermarket) as I walked down the isles.  All I could feel was this horrible crushing grief. I had a lot of trouble seeing past the there and now. Things were bad. I needed hope. I needed to know that life was going to get better. The only way I could figure out how to prove to myself that this would pass, was  to document it (this was before I started blogging). And so, on December 20, 2013 I started a journal. Today I wrote the last entry. I can indeed confirm that things did get better.

I remember being in middle school learning about something called The Scorched Earth Policy.  It was a tactic used in war to destroy enemy land, to kill the people, the animals, and vegetation so that it would be uninhabitable for anyone or anything left. No crops could be planted on that destroyed land; and as a result, no life could flourish. It was utter and complete decimation. That is how I can describe who and what I was at that point of my life. I was destroyed. Though there are no tall majestic trees in my forrest anymore, I can confirm that there is life. There are flowers, and the beginning of something new. What exactly is going to end up there, I have no idea, but I am hopeful that it is something good and beautiful.

When things are bad, there are days that you can not take even baby steps. Sometimes you can take one or two, and sometimes you have steps backwards. The result is that progress is so minisucle that sometimes you wonder if you made any progress at all. This is where keeping a journal can be so helpful. It feels so good to look back at who you were two years ago and have proof of how far you’ve come. Not only that, but its a great place to vent your feelings, tell your story and express yourself,  and to write letters to people that you never actually intend on sending.  What can I say, I like to document my crazy LOL. I like to glue little scraps into mine: tickets for shows I’ve been to, little business cards from restaurants I liked, and all kinds of teeny paper momentos. Today, when I finished the very last page, I felt like a proud mama, like I created a book very unique to me, a story unlike anyone elses, and I can’t wait to get started on my next one.

Journal #2  starts tomorrow as I embark on my journey to Arizona. I am so looking forward to this! I will have a three day weekend all to myself where I intend to do plenty of eating and exploring. Oh, did I mention that I passed my test? I am now a licensed adjuster. I can’t wait to get my certificate. I think I’m going to frame it.

So, out of curiosity, do you journal? Does it help you? Do you look at it every once in a while and read your old entries? Time to share with the class.

p.s. Do follow my Instagram. I hope to post some cool pics of my upcoming adventure!

 

1. Kusmi green tea with roses: I bought some in NYC at their concession inside the Plaza Hotel on the way to my hair appointment at Warren Tricomi (more on that later, it was the most fabulous day). It is positively blissful. I dare you to drink this and not feel like a princess. I have just finished the last of my stash. I implore any handsome man who might be reading this blog who is secretly deeply in love with me to replenish it. He can send me chocolates too. He knows exactly which ones I adore (hint: its La Maison Du Chocolat).

0dc30b9071e8c6ca5aee831d4c69adee2. Speaking of men, here is something that I find highly amusing: there is a guy at work who has a bit of a crush on me. He tells me I am beautiful and that I have pretty eyes. He asked me out and gave me his phone number … he is 25. I told him that aside from the fact that I could not go out with a man that I worked with, I happen to be old enough to be his teenage mommy (although a very youthful looking one LOL). Moi is not ready to be a cougar and wear tacky leopard printed jumpsuits (unless of course it is Dior, then I might consider it–the jumpsuit, that is, not the boy). He is lovely, and I am beyond flattered. Every once in a while, we all could use a bit of an ego boost, no? Alas, my heart is taken by my imaginary lover who sends me poetry and stuffs my belly with expensive chocolate. *Le sigh* Does such a man even exist?

The perfect leapord house frock by John Galliano for Dior, 2009... rawr! I could totally work this!
The perfect leapord house frock by John Galliano for Dior, 2009… rawr! I could totally work this!

3. Goldloxe: I am assuming Goldloxe is a “she” (I could be wrong), but I am absolutely loving her work. I managed to snap a few of her pieces while in NYC, but now that I am back home and following her on Instagram, I have fallen even deeper down the hole. What is it about her whimsical little girly that brings me so much joy? Who is this creature who walks amongst the urban jungle without a care in the world with her doe eyes and tiny pursed lips with the slightest hint of a cheeky smile? I have a feeling there is more to this one than she lets on ;). Goldloxe juxtaposes her into the most unusual of places, amidst other street art to create something that is always charming and/ or amusing.

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Come one, this last one must have made you crack a smile!?
Come one, this last one must have made you crack a smile!?

4. This last one is an oldie but a goodie. You could say it’s my “Scooby snack.” I love these things. I have mentioned them before, but I’ll mention it again (yep, this is my blog, so I can do that sh*t, even if it is a little repetitive). Today I purchased some chocolate dipped coconut macaroons from Godiva. Forget the fancy French macaron that everyone likes to photograph and write about, this kicks its ass. Because last month was my birthday, I had a $10 gift on my Godiva rewards card. I only had to pay $2.50 for these lovelies! God obviously wanted me to have them, it was a sign (*cough* and no, I have still not gotten on the scale after my New York adventure, nor have I gone to the gym… shut up, okay?!).

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5. I am very pleased to tell you that today is Totally Caroline’s one year anniversary. This is not my first blog, but it is my most personal one. I have spilled my heart out here so many times, and the feedback, love, and friendship I have received back in return has meant more to me than you could begin to imagine. Thank you so much for sharing with me in my (mis)adventures, here’s to many more my daaaahlings. I love you.

Ever since I knew about it, I wanted to go to Wynwood (in Miami) to see the street art, but without a car, that proved near impossible. I figured how how to make the journey using public transportation, and it would have taken me about 3 hours (each way!), so I had to file that one away… until I bribed someone into it. Please, don’t ask LOL! I do not regret it though.

Wynwood is freaking awesome! You would not believe the intense concentration of eye candy. I was in Heaven snapping pictures and enjoying all the colors and imagery. It is an absolute feast for the eyes. And of course there was food for the belly too… this is Caroline we are talking about after all—and in my book, fun without food thrown into the mix is kind of unheard of. A stop at the famed Joey’s was most definitely in order. Well, if it’s good enough for Beyonce and Jay-Z, I suppose I can slum it too, eh? Please, who am I kidding, these days I am no stranger to Walmart. Do you know the cool thing about street art though? It’s completely free, so splurging on a gourmet pizza wasn’t too much of an expense. What a great day out! I can’t wait to go back. Wynwood is my new favorite hangout.

I took so many cool pictures, but my camera ran out of battery way before I was done. I wonder what kind of bribe I’ll have to offer for my next visit *shudder*.

Below is just some of the awesomeness available:

Let's start with a rendering of my soul sister, Frida Kahlo.
Let’s start with a rendering of my soul sister, Frida Kahlo.

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An artist at work
An artist at work

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My favorite piece, by  305 Kid. And you know what is way cool? I Instagramed this, and he actually "liked" my photo!
I will end with my favorite piece. The artist is called  305 Kid. And you know what is way cool? I Instagramed this, and he actually “liked” my photo! If you haven’t added me on Instagram, please do, I am remarkably friendless LOL.
Gorgonzola Tartufata pizza at Joey's (my picture came out crap, so I am
Gorgonzola Tartufata pizza at Joey’s (my picture came out crap, so I am “borrowing” this one from miaminewtimes.com

I had the Gorgonzola Tartufata pizza. It had a nice amount of strong but delicious gorgonzola cheese, walnuts (which were a surprising but lovely addition), truffle oil,  topped off with arugala. The ingredients were top notch, and they were not stingy with the toppings. The base was ultra thin and very crispy around the edges. The flavors were excellent, but being the notorious complainer that I am, if I had to mark it down, the base could be a bit more substantial to deal with the heft of the toppings which are apt to make a pizza soggy in a most swift and unfortunate manner ;). I’d surely have it again, but I wouldn’t make a special trip for it. I would, however, love to try some of the other goodies that Joey’s has to offer. Well, okay, so I actually I had desert too. It was a homemade pear upside down tart. There was a very strong honey flavor to it, which I adored, but aside from that, it did not have the wow factor for me.

More photos are available on my Instagram page if you want to check them out.