A New Leaf

After visiting my girlfriend in Monterey where she was holed up with TWIN newborns and her 2 year old (talk about intense), I have turned over a new leaf. One might think that 24 hours witness to this situation would result in utter appreciation of present life (my life isn't so bad, at least I don't have twins!!!!!) and a calm of content in the life I have survived, um, I mean chosen. Instead, don't tell my husband, I am inspired to clean, organize and improve. I certainly have no excuse to be lazy and disorganized...after all, it's not like I have TWINS!!!! I haven't ignored a load of dishes or the 500 piles of laundry in my garage---it is ALL getting done, right this minute, AND put away!!! Unbelievable, I know.
Okay, the only other time I have hormonal swings like this is typically the result of recent pregnancy (OH S&*!!! I'll keep you posted).
Nonetheless, this brings me to the topic of my New Year's Resolution. The "Open Door Policy" which I vowed to uphold no matter the stage of Tornado my house was suffering.
Well, people, drop in, drop by, arrive unannounced ALL DAY AND ALL NIGHT LONG because this house is sparkling and I'm still organizing the junk drawers as we speak. I'm a born again Type A-AMEN!!! Stop by, I'll have a pot of coffee brewing and quite possibly a fresh batch of homemade blueberry scones with freshly whipped cream in my incredibly sterile kitchen.


Friend Food For Thought

It is my dear friend's birthday today. She is 33 (but, I won't name names!!!) and we have spent the better part of 5 years building the wonderful sparkly fast talking slow running thing we call a friendship together.
I have learned so much from her and the many other women I have crossed paths with over the years. I like to think that we have reached a time in our life when age tips the scales of advantage in our favor (never mind the wrinkles and saggy butts, etc.).
Aging. I have stood on every side of this topic and analyzed it from various angles over my 31 years of life: at age 12 I was sure that life was really happening at 16 and when I hit 16 I knew things were going to be totally awesome when I turned 18. Always looking ahead to the older years I was. Then, my twenties were spent KNOWING that this was the ultimate decade, where it all happened and I was finally living it and knowing it all at the same time. Sure, my twenties were littered with a few stupid decisions and even more stupid hair styles but all in all, a lot of life and learning happened in those short 10 years. Oh yeah, and that's where my best friends come in. The most amazing, influential, powerful and intelligent women entered, stage right and we have all managed this crazy show of friendship along our path of life. And here, in our thirties, we have retained the beauty and spunk of younger years, the worldly knowledge of an older self, and the ability to reflect on past, present and future with acceptance and appreciation.
These women are each strong individuals who bring spicy opinions and individual talents to the table. I like to think of us on the set of The View, clutching our coffee mugs and giggling about the latest diaper blowout, chopping down the political campaigns, and exchanging organic cocktail recipes while a whole audience laughs along with us.
A few years ago we really did all sit together once a week, with coffee mugs (or cocktails) and chat it up. Then baby season arrived and the gatherings were less frequent. Life took another turn and some of us moved and more of us had a second child and the set of The View gathered more dust sitting empty these days. But phone calls and email have proved to be a fantastic means of a life line through these busy and exciting years of our lives.
And the best part is that those friendships have stood the test of time, distance and children. And they remain like a classic pair of black heels in our wardrobe, always at the ready in a time of need, a confident accessory that adds a little sparkle to our image, perfectly perfect in any situation.
Despite the added wrinkles and saggy boobs, the ever multiplying little gremlins that keep popping out when someone drinks the water, or the miles that separate us, the friendships remain floating in a sea of countless happy memories. A necessary constant in a life filled with change.
So many thanks to ALL of the wonderful people I am lucky enough to call my friends. And I raise a glass to every friendship in the world because it is the most cherished gift one could give or receive. Whether you share one or many, friends are the glue that keeps our sanity from slipping away.
And Happy Birthday, V. You have such a wonderful way about you, and I cherish every phone chat, every memory, and the perfect friendship I share with you. And don't worry about being 33, you are more gorgeous than Elisabeth Hasselbeck, smarter than Barbara, and nobody snortles cuter than you, girl. Happy Birthday!


Oh My Doodness!

Sitting at the breakfast table, Shelby described the dream she had remembered from the night before.
"And then I realized that I was at a hotel and I just, like, told the hotel that I was there without my mom and, like, (yes, this is my three year old talking) okay, here is your key, and then I just went up to my hotel room all by myself." She finished this last phrase with the certainty of a Supreme Court Justice, head nod, gavel down, case closed.
Later that same day she announced, "I just wanna get naked and shake my booty!"
Uh-huh, definitely trouble.


The Magic of Imagination

Let me start by saying that I've been on a Disney Downer ever since arrived home. It's as if I no longer know what to do with all the free time, the quiet moments... I find myself itching for a fast ride, loud noise and throngs of screaming children (what the hell is wrong with me???)
Let's discuss the real magic:
Disneyland has certainly earned their Magic Kingdom title because it is truly where all the magic happens. This trip was my first experience as a parent, and let me tell you, those "Disney Folk" do it right for the little people. Every detail, every moment, every voice and trick is in full effect in Disneyland and they don't EVER veer off course.
The critical side of me scrutinized Peter Pan while he entertained Shelby in Storybook land. First off, the kid was about 25 and had to be on hormone enhancers to keep THAT voice!!! He didn't miss a beat, churning up conversations of food fights and extra servings of bubble gum ice cream. He even looked comfortable in his shiny green tights-WOW!
We spent some time with a very enthusiastic employee who was kind enough to give us some VIP treatment on our first day. She immediately got down on Shelby's level, asked her questions, listened intently to every answer and made both kids her priority. I was extremely impressed.
Let's rewind to our arrival. We blew into the valet parking at our hotel (Paradise Pier) flustered and exhausted after three wrong turns and a second stop for directions. You can imagine how we looked at this point (LOCO). We fell out of our car and were greeted by two hotel staff, one friendly valet, and one super nice guy who zeroed in on Shelby and asked her all the right questions. Before we had time to blink, he was handing her an autographed picture of all the Disney Princesses while John and I frantically unloaded our belongings. Okay, this guy was good. Really good. BUT, where's the adult beverages???!!!! Doesn't Cinderella cook up a mean Mai Tai? Where's that, buddy?!?
Skipping ahead to the evening Fantasmic Show...OMG don't miss this!!!! It is truly amazing and the fireworks show that follows is equally magical-Holy Flying Tinkerbell. P.S. Warn your sensitive little ones about the witches and dragon in Fantasmic-it makes it easier to breeze through once you're there.
The Magic Of Summer: Sure, it's crowded. Sure, it's hot. But the bonus: EVERYTHING is happening, the evenings are gorgeous and excitement is around every corner. We arrived prepared for outrageous lines, intolerable crowds and total frustration. We were met with tolerable lines, a few hot hours of weather, and completely manageable crowds. Staying at the Paradise Pier (a Disney Hotel only a Monorail ride and 5 minute walk from Tomorrowland) SAVED US!!! The very second we snapped at a meandering family blocking our path to Frontierland we knew it was time to bail. Hit the pool, hit the bar, chilax for an hour or two and then go at it again later. Well worth the completely outrageous prices for our mid 80's decor hotel boudoir.
Alright, I could go on and on but ultimately, this is what it's about-MAGIC. Those Disney people ROCK!!!! Every teenage college kid decked out in Snow White ballgowns and Minnie Mouse heels is well trained and perfectly in character. They are the magic and the magic is Disneyland. Um, could somebody cast me in a commercial, please?