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Friday, April 29, 2011

Girrrrrlls Night!


Going out Saturday night with a hometown friend and a bunch of her girlies...some of whom I know from back in the day (aka high school). It's been a while since I had a true girls night so I'm pumped!

Last I heard, we are renting a luxury van to get us into the city so no one has to drive. Feels a little like prom...minus the forties and dutchies. I've classed it up some over the years.

With 10 girls in the group I'm anticipating some mild debauchery, especially on the way home...that is if I'm not passed out on one of the seats.

I'm more of a lightweight than I used to be so I'll do my best to hold up. Must be ready for Sunday night softball!!!

Should be a fun night...and after a week of locking myself away I friggin deserve it!

Have an amazing weekend!
xo

Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Four Agreements

The Four Agreements might be my favorite book. I think it should be essential reading for every human being. It's quick and easy, and will leave you challenged and inspired.


A New York Times Bestseller for over 7 years, it was written by Mexican author, Shaman and teacher Don Miguel Ruiz. Based on ancient Toltec wisdom, the book proposes 4 tenets for living that no doubt will broaden your perspectives on yourself and the way you interact with the world.


Each chapter breaks down an agreement in perfectly practical fashion. These simple yet powerful concepts will seriously impact your way of being. I highly recommend!!!

A while back I typed the agreements out and posted them in my bathroom and at the office. They're great reminders to keep yourself in check on a daily basis.


Yesterday I found a store that sold bookmarks with the agreements on the front and their descriptions on the back. I cleaned them out...think I got 6!


I recently shared the book with a friend who called me saying he loved it so much he bought it for 5 of his friends. I love turning people on to it and yesterday I discovered other Ruiz writings for myself! Check these out...

60-sec clip about THE FOUR AGREEMENTS app for itunes

Download THE FOUR AGREEMENTS app for itunes

THE FOUR AGREEMENTS Wisdom Collection: 3-Book Boxed Set (Order online at Amazon.com for less than $20!)
I might have to purchase this even though I already have a copy. It's an amazing price with the 2 additional books- haven't read them yet.

Download inspiring apps for you and your kids at Oceanhouse Media

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

BECOME YOUR DREAM: T2

About a year ago I discovered these three words...BECOME YOUR DREAM…scrawled on the side of a box amidst a pile of garbage on an Upper East Side sidewalk.


This beautifully poignant message resonated with me, so I snapped a shot thinking I had found an anomaly. Or that it had found me.

A few months later I saw those same words on a another pile of scraps and then again at a construction site in the same neighborhood. I eventually learned that East Harlem street artist James De La Vega and his team were responsible.



Yesterday, in seriously serendipitous fashion, I ran into Mr. De La Vega as he was making his mark with white chalk on a sidewalk somewhere on 3rd avenue near 72nd street. I had no idea it was him until I saw his name next to the drawing. 

He had already hurried off, but I followed him across the street…psycho stalker style…and when I finally caught up, I told him how much I appreciated his work. He asked me my name, whipped out his chalk and made me a masterpiece.

 Simple, sweet and especially for me!


 A few blocks later, another message…


The ultimate, universally shared dream. 

Prelude to a post: BETTER LATE THAN NEVER?

Sorry for the super late post. 


Apparently the only thing I’ve ever been early for was my birth…at least that’s what my mother says. At times like this it’s hard to disagree.

Technically it’s still Tuesday but naturally, I’m beginning to rethink my 5-day-a-week commitment. There were some unexpected circumstances today, but that’s life, so I make NO EXCUSES!

I love that I’ve jumped in head first but as I mentioned last week, baby steps are okay too.

In this case it’s more a marathon than a sprint and building up might be a better option. At the end of the day I’d choose quality before quantity.

Considering my tardiness, I’ve decided to leave tonight’s official post (Become Your Dream) up through tomorrow.  



Friday, April 22, 2011

So you’re telling me there’s a chance?




A guy emailed today on a certain internet dating site that shall remain nameless. It was his 2nd attempt to contact me. I hadn’t replied to the first email sent 2 weeks earlier. He asked for some kind of confirmation as to whether I was interested or not. Really? I thought my non-response was a clear sign that I wasn’t interested.

Then I thought “eh, what the hell” and proceeded to email back…a clear sign of 5 things:
1- no sign is ever really clear in the world of online dating
2- a mixed signal is better than no signal
3- NO really means MAYBE SOMEDAY
4- it pays to be ballsy
5- I am suffering from general confusion with regards to dating

On that note, have a glorious weekend!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Treasure your trash!


Last week, my car decided it no longer wanted to reverse. I can’t say I was surprised. I’ve only had it for 6 months but it’s an older model hand-me-down that’s been through the ringer…most recently with my Mario Andretti style of driving.

I've regularly referred to it as a dump. I've mumbled aloud from the driver's seat..."I hate this f-ing car." But the truth is I've been been incredibly thankful to have it. 

I either have to put at least $1000 into it or consider a lease. Without a full time job, neither option is particularly desirable.

I’m obviously not happy about it…it sucks. My first thought was “am I ever getting out of this house?!” The old me might’ve run with that thought for days or even weeks and allowed it to consume my entire state of being.

But instead, I’ve been maintaining a pretty strong front. It’s not the end of the world.

Here’s a little quote that helped me keep it in perspective…

“If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back.”
  Written by Regina Brett, 90 yrs old, Cleveland, Ohio

 Something to think about.



Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A little mo' about me... PART III


So, where am I now?

Well, I just turned 32, I’m single, and after years of living in Manhattan, I’m subletting my apartment and temporarily living at home with my mom…in Staten Island. Oh, and I’m currently unemployed. (Long pause for judgment).

NOTE: (I'm happy to say I'm no longer unemployed! Check out posts about my job sitch here...and here!)

Despite these seemingly grim facts, I’m also in the best place I’ve been in for years. Don’t get me wrong, there were moments I didn’t leave the house cause I was pretty certain I was a colossal loser and my life was over.

It’s been a rough road at times, but I learned the hard way- via beating myself into a depression and subsequently clawing my way out- that while these are the stats of my life at the moment, they’re not the stats of me. They don’t define me (unless I let them, of course).

In fact, being unattached to a job, a significant other, a lovely apartment, allowed me to get back an unfiltered sense of myself I hadn’t seen in years.

I think when you’re stripped of the things you identify with most, you ultimately realize that they’re not necessary for survival. At least not in the spiritual sense.

If you take that time to reflect and use it as an opportunity for growth, it’s amazing what you can create for yourself from a whole lot of empty space.

It just so happens there was a great need for change in my life. Did it have to come to all this for me to make those changes? I guess so.

I had been struggling with certain issues for years but never really dealt with them because on the outside things were manageable, and I was fine. But who really wants to be fine?

That cycle might’ve continued for years before I was able to devote adequate time and attention to it. Do I feel a sense of judgment sometimes about my situation? Yes.

Would I prefer to be where I am today- sans relationship, sans apartment, sans job- yet feeling “great” as opposed to “fine?” Absolutely.

I never thought I’d say it but I’m so grateful for the time this situation has given me to figure it all out. There are so many amazing things that have come out of this period in my life. And it’s made for some great writing!

New doors are already opening. Aside from this blog, I’m doing some freelance writing for a local startup site. It’s in the beginning phases and I’m so excited to be a part of that.

Until recently, I had never really considered this as a possibility. This being blogging. Now that I have and I’m actually doing it, I’m in love with it! I’m starting to consider what else is really possible and that’s a great feeling.

I'm not someone who is completely comfortable stepping out into the spotlight, yet it seems many things I've longed to do require that. The truth is I hate being ruled by fear. The only thing worse than doing what's uncomfortable is being limited by what's uncomfortable.

So I'm pushing the boundaries of my comfort zone. I've never felt this vulnerable and it's been both terrifying and empowering. I know whatever happens, I've already gotten something priceless out of it.

Me and my life will continue to be a work in progress so stay tuned for much more as I continue my journey onward and upward…armed with my recently reclaimed weapon…my MOJO!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Real men don’t text!



I met a nice guy at a party not that long ago. We talked for over an hour, exchanged info and he texted several days later. The texts went back and forth 3 or 4 times and then…nothing. I was the last one to text. Ouch.

To be completely honest, I was more perplexed than disappointed.

This is not the first time this has happened so it left me wondering: Am I a bad texter? Do I have some kind of texting etiquette deficiency? WTF? I’m starting to develop a complex.

My first thought was that it must’ve been something I said. So I went back into the texts to see where I might’ve gone wrong. I did make a sarcastic joke in one of the last texts…maybe he didn’t find it funny?

And then I checked myself and thought “seriously, how off putting could I have been on a 4th text?!” If that was the reason I’m clearly better off without him. But I wondered how different it would've been if he would've just called.

Which brings me to the question of the day… When did making a phone call become such a big deal?

I thought guys were all about instant gratification? I mean, I get that it’s helpful for a quick update or when you can’t talk. But as the primary method of communicating? Not a fan. Especially when you first meet someone.

Call me old school, but I think the phone call deserves a Robert Downey Jr. kind of comeback.



Yes, it’s typically awkward at first, but at least you get that initial layer of ice out of the way and jump right in to the thing that got you exchanging numbers in the first place…getting to know each other!

I see the appeal with texting in getting to think about and edit your response. But when you’re initially getting to know someone you have no foundation with, can you really gauge chemistry from texts?

As a culture, we’re all about efficiency, yet I’ve found things to be so much more complicated over text. What takes 5 min of back and forth texting would take 10-20 seconds over the phone. I don’t get it. Is it just me?

It seems in general we have an innate ability to assume and misinterpret things. It’s challenging enough dealing with the consequences of that when we’re communicating face to face.

Take away voice, tone, and all the other elements of expression that allow us to read a person’s intention. We’re essentially left guessing and it becomes a complete crapshoot. So much can get lost in translation.

If a guy picks up the phone to call me there are three things I immediately credit in his favor:
1- he’s definitely interested and aggressive enough to make moves
2- he’s confident enough to have a conversation 
3- he’s chivalrous

I believe real men have a voice and know how to use it. It's attractive. 

My guess is that this person was “just not that into me” or maybe he decided I wasn’t his type or maybe he dropped his phone in the toilet and lost my number forever. At the end of the day, it’s always just a guess.

I’ve stopped worrying about why people do what they do. I can only control what I do. And I will continue to encourage good ol’ fashioned phone conversation with any guy I meet because I want a relationship with someone who doesn’t want to limit the conversation to 160 characters.

(Yes, I have a ghetto phone that only allows me to text 160 characters at a time. Waiting on the new iphone!)

Monday, April 18, 2011

Different Strokes

After years of disappointing myself with my ongoing inconsistency at the gym, I finally decided to stop talking sh-t and get it together.

So, I called up my gym and cancelled my membership...


Whatchu talkin bout Willis???

I have nothing in particular against gyms. I just couldn't get myself to go on a regular basis and finally owned up to the fact that it simply wasn’t working for me.

If you actually go, it’s clearly worth every penny. For me, even with my special "longtime member discount", I was literally throwing my money away each month.

So, I started working out at home using my DVR, a few sets of weights and a yoga mat. And it’s working! The last time I was in shape like this was college. At 32, this is very exciting...yeah baby!

The problem for me was the time involved. Felt like it took forever to get dressed, get out, get to the gym and back again.

Now I must confess, those who know me know that what takes a normal person a normal amount of time takes me twice as long…on a good day (I’m working on this.). Even for the average person, the time commitment can be an issue. 

But now I just roll out of bed, put on a sports bra, grab the remote and workout. There’s so much on TV these days to choose from, so I can have a range of workouts throughout the week without leaving my house.

And because it doesn’t take a ton of time, I’m less inclined to cut it out of my day. No excuses...it's impossible for me to BS myself now.

Sometimes I’ll do a half-hour program that, with commercials, only amounts to about 20 min of exercise. Never thought that would be enough but it seems to be working better than doing nothing at all.

At 4-5 times a week, even a little bit makes me feel energized and keeps my metabolism in check for the rest of the day. Time-wise my routine now is half of what it was at the gym, yet the results are two fold. I used to think I need 2 hours at the gym to see results...probably why I never went.

Like most people, I tend to get bored easily, so I like being able to change it up. And your body gets used to routine, so you have to continually challenge it in order to see results.

I do yoga, pilates, aerobics, dance, strength training, etc., etc. Also just started playing softball on the weekends and I'll be taking out my bike once the weather warms up. 

The moral of the story is there's more than one way to get your goal accomplished. Anytime I hold myself to an all-or-nothing standard, I wind up resisting altogether. Sound familiar? This is probably why New Year's resolutions often fail.

Different strokes for different folks...whatever works!

If you have that kind of discipline I applaud you. For me, working in steps has proven more effective in the long run. I can gradually increase my progression as I go and because it’s so do-able, I’m actually enjoying it rather than viewing it as this huge, dreaded process. 

FYI, this lesson is applicable in just about any area of life. So take it on and see what happens.

Never too late to get your ass in gear people! Summer's coming!!!

Ok, that's my speech for the day.

Friday, April 15, 2011

BIGGER isn’t always BETTER

SUPERFINE DESIGN: BIGGER isn’t always BETTER

Something light-n-fluffy for you this Friday…



For all of you NYCers, you know space is a valuable commodity. I am a firm believer that you can make any size space incredible…and I have always done it on a small budget, so don’t think you have to spend a ton to make it happen.

Check out the link above for Apartment Therapy’s feature on designing small spaces.

My uncle’s partner Ariel put some serious muscle into his tiny apartment in LA and is a finalist in their national contest. His is the best in my opinion…seriously, no bias! 

Be sure to vote for him before April 30th if you agree, it only takes a few minutes. He’s also working on a green furniture project. Love it!  


Stay tuned for the final chapter of my backstory… A lil mo’ about me: Part III, next week.

Have an amazing weekend! xo

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

F*%# IT!

To blog or not to blog? That has been the question for quite some time.

It always seemed like a good idea, but until recently, it was just another thing I’d probably do “someday.”

Well that day has finally arrived.

Yet even as I take that massive step forward, I question —

Who am I to blog and what do I really have to say? Who will really care? And if anyone cares, what will they think?

Ugh, the insidious voice of doubt and discouragement. Like nails on a chalkboard.

How do we get past that in life? By taking a really deep breath and just saying F*%# IT!

It's incredibly liberating to put on your game face and stare down your greatest fears.

I’m sure that voice will continue to crop up — like 2 minutes from now — but I'll continue to set it aside and forge ahead anyway.

I hope you'll do the same. 

So with that in mind, I proudly welcome you to the world of littlemissMOJO!

Take a look around and make yourself at home. I hope you decide to stay a while. And when you go, be sure to take something with you!