Make Links Open In A New Window

Monday, February 28, 2011

shove it in the back and chew

When I was pregnant with Ashton, I had dental implant surgery.


Imagine a very hungry, pregnant woman who was unable to bite with her front teeth for about two weeks.


This means no burritos, no sandwiches, no pizza... nothing unless it was cut into tiny pieces and shoved to be enjoyed only by the back teeth.


And I was hungry oft.


My dentist suggested that I stop by a little Mexican food drive-thru on my way home (Roberto's, specifically) and try out their carne asada fries. He told me how easy it was to eat and all I had to do was "Shove it in the back and chew."


I am nothing if not obedient. I did exactly as the good doctor prescribed and did it frequently thereafter.


Behold, the carne asada fries:



Crunchy french fries (mexican fries?), carne asada, refried beans, sour cream, cheese, tomatoes, guacamole, onions, cilantro. Half of the ingredients are on my "do not consume" list, but once in a while you just gotta go for it.



Order it with a large, icy horchata and you will fall in love, my friends.

Have you had it?  Do you love it? Do you want it for lunch today?

a

Friday, February 25, 2011

picture the new me

I got a new haircut.


again.


I don't think I can play this game much longer. The whole WOW-look-at-me-and-my-shorter-hair-isn't-it-so-different game. I only have so much left to cut. 

Remember this sadness I refer to as Permagate? All of that permed hair is officially GONE!



Taking the picture to showcase my new 'do proved to be difficult. Photobooth makes that revealing noise (beep, beep, BEEP) and the kids a-come a-runnin'.


So, here is my new haircut (it is actually red now, but how would you know) with my posterity:



What? This isn't all about me?


I've always loved the hair on Linda Evangelista in George Michael's Freedom music video. Since the two of us are practically twins, anyway.


While my children and I were filling up the entire memory space of our computer with Photobooth pictures, we notice that in the GLOW effect Rhett appears angelic. He is truly about 10 shades brighter than the rest of us. So, we took this while we were at it to remember:

Oh, Rhett. Stealing the show again.

Bon weekend, mes amis!

a

Thursday, February 24, 2011

where in the world

I am a rolling stone. Slowly rolling. Very slowly. 


I might stay in a place for six months or a couple of years and then I start to get that itch--that feeling that something else is calling, somewhere else. I prepare myself for an adventure.


But then, I crave the comfort of sameness. I envy those who visit their parents who still live in the house where they grew up. The ideal of planting your roots and watching them grow is immensely appealing. Coming home.


I love the idea of living in a small town with huge yards, big canopied trees, and kids running the streets. Where everybody knows your name, and they're always glad you came. Lemonade stands that get visited and barefoot walks to the grocer to pick up some ice cream on a late summer evening. I want my kids to have lifelong friends and camp out in the backyard. (Or in their tree house!)


Yet the pull of a big city is exciting and full of options. Always a new friend to make, a new restaurant to try, a new art exhibit to see. In a big city, you don't need a big yard: the whole city is your yard. (Just watch out for the cars! Especially the yellow ones!) I want to live in a place where going out on a date isn't limited to a small selection, nor does it take hours to get somewhere. I don't want my kids to grow up where everyone looks, acts, believes, and thinks exactly as they do.


I want a small home where we are forced to be near each other. And less to clean. And less STUFF to put in it. And oozing with charm.


I want a big home where my kids can grow. I've got THREE boys, after all. I want garages to park my cars in and put all of the bikes. I want a fireplace in the master, an art/study room, and an extra freezer.


These are the lamentations of the blessed, to be sure. I am undoubtedly ultra-blessed. But I am in my 30s with a husband and four children. I need to start figuring out where in the world we are going to live.


How am I ever going to make up my mind and STICK TO IT?!

a

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

flashing backwards

Just for fun, let's go back in photos and see what in the world was so important during the week of February 22.


One year ago:


I believed in unpaid product placement


Two years ago:


I thought I was a Hanes t-shirt crafty genius


Three years ago:

Ashton had hair. 




Four years ago:


Johnny began posing with his trademark slant smile.


Five years ago:
 ?
I didn't own a digital camera, apparently.
and I am too lazy to scan.
What were you doing/believing/thinking a year ago?

a



Tuesday, February 22, 2011

nothin' to say





Oh, February. 

a

Sunday, February 20, 2011

these are real people

So I am told.


This video is for your odd enjoyment this Presidents' Day. Because these are actual humans making music. And Presidents are also human.


It's all about being human. Enjoy today, human people.



*I feel a kinship to the woman singing "Holiday" by Madonna. It's like looking in a mirror and seeing myself wearing a swim cap, white suit and clown-white makeup doing the most awkward running man (dance move) known to man. So, yeah, a typical Saturday.

a

Friday, February 18, 2011

That'll show him.

 so last night I was upset. 

You see, I've been really good about not eating red meat for the 15 months since my neurologist strongly suggested that I eat it rarely (pun intended). I can count on ONE hand how many times I have eaten it during that time.


Yesterday I felt frustrated with the neurologist and his office; I felt like I was being strung around and ignored a bit (cue the violins).  I may have cried a little.


And then I saw a music video (this one, actually) where a hamburger was being made.


So, I called Alan and said, "You know what I really want to eat for dinner? A hamburger."


I may have heard him cry a little.


So we said CARPE DIEM, got a babysitter, and went out to find a good hamburger. I didn't want just any burger for my defiant red meat-eating rebellion. It had to be good. (It also had to be worth paying for a babysitter.)


Alan had heard of a dive bar and grill called Lucky 13 where they allegedly served excellent burgers. We followed our noses and our logic and found it pretty easily. 


It was pretty packed for a Thursday night although we were the only ones consuming FOOD. 

This is how Alan supported my insubordination and anger:


That is the Lucky 13 burger: a 14-ounce patty topped with Belizean habanero puree and roasted habaneros, stuffed between two grilled cheese sandwiches along with sautéed onions, roasted jalapeños and roasted habaneros.

¡Ay, caramba!  That is a spicy burger.

Here it is on the inside, shown with a side of Spicy Cajun fries.

My choice is hardly wicked compared to big Al's, but wicked enough (and with rosemary garlic fries):


Guess how much Al ate of his? I think today he will be crying a lot more. (wink, wink)

a

Thursday, February 17, 2011

for your review

Lady Gaga gets a lot of love for being unique. I'm not buying it. Everyone is a remake of someone else for the new generation. Case in point: her latest song is remarkably similar to a Madonna classic. But this is old news.


My newest song for your review could also be considered old news. Or new news to some.


Ellie Goulding:




What Lady Gaga has taught me is that it is OK to borrow heavily from a popular '80s song. (see also the Black Eyed Peas new song "The Time")  I am going to copy like made, make it my own, and consider latex as a friend. I'm working on it. You're going to love it. 

But, tell me what you think of Ellie Goulding. Any new songs that I NEED to hear?

a

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

edna


I had to commandeer Ahhnna's blog today in my charitable desire to help the English-speaking world learn how to (ahem) speak English.
There are some words that find their way into the vocabulary of modern society and become "acceptable" when they should be anything but. If you hear these words, do like I do: cover your ears and run away, screaming loudly.

If you say these words, for the love of Shakespeare: STOP! 

Just because they appear in a dictionary does not make them OK to say. It means that the people at the dictionary recognize that there are words that appear as dialect, not that they are correct to say. 


Three NOT words:

acrosst
anyways
boughten

Learn these. Learn to abhor these. And when these words start to come out of your mouth, SHUT IT.
Then you will be speaking English, my friends.

Yours in the Language of Justice,

Edna

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Confidence is Key

So maybe I had a dream about it. MAYBE in my dream I was single and ready to mingle. And just maybe every single guy was fawning all over me.


Not that I want that, or anything. really.


It did remind me of some conversations Al and I have had about confidence, though. Confidence is more attractive than a killer body, the biggest eyes you've ever seen, or the whitest smile. You could be the most beautiful person in the world, but if your posture and your face scream "insecure" then you lose

source
Think about Queen Latifah. In the checklist of Societal Beauty, she should not fare well. But that lady is confident in her own skin. She is (seemingly) funny, brave, and kind. She is sexy. I can also think of many "celebrities" who are thin, blond, with big... smiles who lack that je ne sais quois. I actually know the "quois"--it is that ol' confidence. Think about it.


It reminds me of another of my Grandfather's Hints from Home:



Old school fake it 'til you make it. It's good for your back and good for your psyche. 


To my nieces, friends, lurkers who will be friends: Be happy with who you are. Work what you've got, because you've got a lot. Don't settle for anything or anyone who makes you feel like you deserve less (or only them). Single or married, thin or fat, smart or learning, big eyes or squinty ones: work it! Walk like you own the place. Talk like you know what you're talking about. Smile because you have billions of reason to do so. 

Nothing is sexier or more attractive than confidence. Own it.

a

Monday, February 14, 2011

cards o' love

My sister, Amy, has been making these cards for years and we decided to give them a try this Valentine's Day. It's our attempt at being less commercial / less sugar-promoting / still thoughtful / no glue.


Keep in mind that I let Maggie and Johnny make the decisions on what was on their cards and what they said. I take full credit for the cards of Rhett and Ashton.


Happy Valentine's Day to you, mes amis!


 



a

Friday, February 11, 2011

be kind, rewind

image
The other day, my kids were rewinding a movie to watch some classy part over and over and over again (I think it involved a toilet and some flatulent noises--and yes, I allowed it). I almost went in and told them, with one hand on my hip and the other in a pointed, wagging finger, that in MY DAY, you couldn't rewind movies so easily. In fact, what they do is not even really rewinding. What is there to wind? There is no tape, no black strip of whatever. 


Remember it? Was there much worse than getting your popcorn ready, putting in a movie, getting cozy under the blankets and then WHAM! the video is playing the end credits?! You had to push the rewind button (sometimes TWICE to get it to go faster) and sit and wait for the entire tape to rewind. Sometimes, you could time it right and get the movie to start right after the previews. Somehow, fast forwarding previews seemed to take longer than rewinding the whole tape!


My kids will never know the frustration, NAY the pleasure of trying to find your favorite song on a cassette tape. The LP generation had it easy with the handy markings that separated the songs on the record. We in the cassette generation had to work HARD to FF and REW to get to the right places on the tape. If you wanted to listen to the same song over and over again, there was no LOOP. No sir. You had to rewind the bad boy and hope you could time it just right so you wouldn't cut off the beginning of the song or hear too much of the last song.


And what do my kids do? They play whatever song they want, by artist, by title, by genre. They can find anything, start anywhere, play it over and over again with a touch of a button.


Also in my day, if you had a question about your country report or wanted to find out the natural colors of tulips, your family had to own a huge set of encyclopedias. Hopefully they weren't too old, either. Or your report and your credibility would be down to toilet (yes, it is a major reference in our household). You could go to the library... ! Card catalog, anyone? The one with literal cards. Dewey decimal system? 

Now information is so accessible it isn't even challenging to our kids. No alphabetical order and lugging around three huge books. Bibliographies? http://piece-of-cake.com


My mother used to try to convince me that when she was little, her route to school was difficult. No joke, she walked uphill both ways (hello, San Francisco!) and took multiple commuter rides. Which on one hand makes my heart break a little for the sweet young-version of my mother--all by her little self--but on the other hand, makes me vindicated that my kids walk without me the whole 2 houses plus two crosswalk-guarded crosswalks to school and back. I am so mean, right? Even in the snow, I say to them: Go fast! Look both ways. It sure is cold, but it's good for you!


But I digress. My Mom may have had to walk alone in a big city uphill both ways, but think about MY childhood. I mean, come on! Cassettes!


a

Thursday, February 10, 2011

some of what I believe... and you?

Do you believe in prayers?

Do you believe in a power greater than your own?

Here's what I always wonder about prayers: where do "faith" and "Thy will be done" intersect? How can I have faith in a miracle and also expect that it won't happen if He doesn't so choose? What is expected of me to have "sufficient faith" to receive my prayer's appealing?  And if I pray somewhat hesitantly because I know that God knows what is best, does that make my faith less sufficient?

Sometimes it seems that the only stories of faith that are shared are the ones about FAITH OVERCOMING OBSTACLES. Something precious was found, someone found their way home, someone was healed. Cynics, like me, always think silently after such a story is told: that is truly wonderful, but a lot of times it doesn't work out and we should still have faith.

I pray.

I believe that a Father in Heaven hears my prayers. I believe that He wants the best for me. I believe He wants me to confide and trust in Him and His Son. I believe that if I ask for something, in prayer, that He agrees will help me to become a better person, He will grant it.

Trouble is, I don't know what will make me a better person. God is omniscient--He knows all. I may think that this or that will make me better, but He truly knows what will best form me. So, why should I go around asking over and over for something that I think will make me better when He knows that it won't? He might just give it to me after a time if I keep asking so fervently. And I might have been better without it.

But ask I do. And pray I will.

***

What of the prayers of many? Do you believe in their power?

I have been the recipient of the prayers of many. Just yesterday, in fact. Without going into detail, I asked for my family to join me in prayer. I can't suppose to know what they said, but I can say that I know that they did. Not because they told me, but because I truly felt it. Truly.

I have had 3 MRIs in the last year. If you have had one, raise your hand. You know what I am talking about when I say that they are loud, and stiff, and can play tricks in your head. Each time, they have scanned my brain. When they do this, you cannot move your head in the slightest or the test will have to restart. (each test can be from 1 - 4 minutes long x 15 - 20 tests)

I always have to swallow saliva. It collects in the back of my throat and I feel like I am going to gag or choke. If I swallow, then my head moves and the test has to be restarted. This happened MULTIPLE times during my 2nd MRI. And I always have to pee. And my head starts to pound. And my feet get unbearably cold. And my shoulder starts to itch. So does my nose. But DON'T MOVE a MUSCLE.

During yesterday's MRI, I felt calmer than normal. Less anxious than normal. The tech even told me that I was doing a "great job." I would have laughed at this if it were my first time, thinking "how can I do a great job by sitting still and doing nothing?" My other MRIs were harder for me to sit still and do nothing. So I was glad.

My anxiety during another test yesterday was also quelled significantly. I cannot describe how calm I felt. But I realized--on more than one occasion--that I was being comforted. That there was a calm presence surrounding me and literal love encompassing my being. Literal love.

I believe in the power of the prayers of many. And I am completely humbled that there are so many that will pray on my behalf.

Humbled that I could be so loved.

***


What are your thoughts on prayer? Do you believe that with faith you can overcome anything?

a

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

suggestions on a Wednesday

I wish I could have sent all of you my latest romantic CD mix. I am tempted to send another because, well, I am a giver... and I think it is pretty swell.


Check it out, love fools:


  1. I Do Adore                                              Mindy Gledhill
  2. Beautiful Girl                                           INXS
  3. How Deep Is Your Love                            The Bird And The Bee
  4. Love Is Here To Stay                               Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong
  5. Baby I'm-A Want You                               Bread
  6. Here Comes My Baby                               Cat Stevens
  7. You're The Inspiration                              Chicago
  8. You Picked Me                                         A Fine Frenzy
  9. Kissed You in the Rain                             Freiheit
  10. Once Was Love                                       Ingrid Michaelson
  11. Love Me Tender                                      Elvis Presley
  12. Love Today                                            Mika
  13. Happy Together                                      The Nylons
  14. Leave the Light On                                  Priscilla Ahn
  15. Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground        Willie Nelson
  16. I Want You                                             Rachael Yamagata
  17. And I Love Her                                        The Beatles
  18. They Can't Take That Away From Me        Billie Holiday
  19. Love Me                                                The Little Willies
  20. Love Is the Answer                                Weezer
  21. Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic       The Police
  22. Come Away With Me                             Norah Jones

This is a pretty awesome and kissing-filled video featuring the # 8 song. Check it out, if you want to see a plethora of kissing:




So, yeah, I am feeling the love after all. Tell me something really incredible and I might send you this awesome mix. I am talking INCREDIBLE! (and if you are my sister, you already know I am going to send you a hot mix real soon--like always--so you can tell me how incredible I am!) No sob stories. Sorry, but I got enough of my own and I need to hear things that are fantastically fantastic. Don't we all?


INCREDIBLE!

a

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

my boys


seriously, could a girl get any luckier?


I don't think it's possible.


except, of course, if you add this sweetest little lady:


I am not one to brag... much. 

Today, I just cannot help myself.

a

Monday, February 7, 2011

Para espanol

for reference, because I am not THAT inconsiderate

Let it be written that I do NOT speak Spanish.


Sure, growing up in Arizona you pick up some words and phrases. I did live in MESA (which, for the uninformed means "table" en espanol), after all. My dad always insisted on speaking Spanish to every waiter and staff member at all of the Mexican restaurants. So, yes, I have heard mucho Espanol in my days.


But I don't speak it. I am truly the gringest gringa whenever I even try. 


And yet--it happens more often that I should admit--when I am zoning on a service call and the recorded operator says, "Para espanol, marque el número cinco," I push cinco. I PUSH FIVE to speak Spanish. The recorded operator starts speaking super-speedy Spanish and I don't know how to get back to the previous menu. Zero doesn't work nor does the pound key.


So I hang up and try again. 


I wish I could say that it has never happened to me twice in a row. Alas...!

¡Ay, caramba!

a 

Friday, February 4, 2011

Who is this Saint Valentine? and a winner

Oh, you want a winner?


Even more, you want me to tell you MY opinions on Valentine's Day?

Feb 14, 2007: Maggie gets her first gift from a secret admirer
Well, since you asked...


... it all started back in grade school in the desert of Arizona. I was a young lady, full of hope and romanticism. I loved decorating my boxes with all colors and sizes of paper doilies and sparkly stickers. I lovingly wrote each classmate's name on each homemade Valentine, even to the stinky boys who said inappropriate things at recess. We would chase around the cutest boy in class and tell secrets inside the large, painted cement pipes. One year, I even caught the cutest boy in class--Troy--and he gave me a purple plastic charm shaped as a handbag.


Every year was practically the same, filled with blissful ideas of love and Valentine's Day. That is, until about the sixth grade. Suddenly having a boyfriend meant more than waving coyly at the playground or riding tandem bikes together around Lara's house. In sixth grade, boyfriends and girlfriends kissed! The horrors! And there were whispers of other things that some of the kids did when they were "going out." It was the age of ginormous cookies with frosted messages of love. And Mylar balloons. And huge stuffed animals that held hearts proclaiming mutual adoration.


From then on, the expectation of Valentine's Day upset the sweet blissfulness of a young girl's idea of romance. If you were without someone special on that day, you would become tragically upset. I never cared much to be "without" during my schooldays, except on Christmas (mistletoe), New Year's Eve (midnight kiss), and Valentine's Day.


And then there were the boxes of chocolate. 9 times out of 10 those heart-shaped boxes of chocolate are pretty disgusting. And surprisingly empty for the size of the box. Always a disappointment.


Even the Valentine's where I have had a boyfriend, fiance, or a husband, the expectations almost always ruin any of the sentiment or romanticism. The dinner, the outfit, the presents, the flowers--all are expensive, forced, and EXPECTED. Where is the romance in that?


I don't know about you, but when someone expects something from me, it becomes much less fun to give. I don't want flowers on Valentine's Day (not that I get them). I don't want chocolate or a stuffed animal or lingerie (ok, I'll take the chocolate... who am I kidding?).


I want moments of romance and love to be sincere and kind. I don't want to expect flowers every time Alan thinks of how lovely I am (not that I get them). 


I want romance to be the blissful and adoring sentiments that I believed in as a child.


High expectations, indeed.


This year, as in years previous, we will "celebrate" at home with a candlelit dinner and simple treats at every plate. We will decorate the table with hearts and red and pink. We will eat something spectacular. And then we will all go to sleep. I will live the Valentines' Days of my youth vicariously through my children. That is why I had them, after all.


Without further ado, the winner is...



Go Heather! 

Thanks to EVERYONE for the love and for following. I hope to make you not regret it.

a

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Sanity for February

I'm trying to lessen. I figure if I remove, clean, delete, aerate, simplify my life then I can reassess more clearly.


Since February is so short, I don't feel AS BAD eliminating the frivolous and unnecessary as much. (see yesterday... wakka wakka)


Cleaning out closets and storage areas, using the food we already have, simplifying my week: these are all February goals.


I started with this sign:



I thought I was going to get egged. Some kids were so ticked that I could hear their moans from inside, two rooms deep. I almost ran out and handed out the candy in my holiday jars. 

Sorry, these Valentine hearts might be a little stale since they're from last year... or the year before.


Then again, dude, it was 18*F outside and I've handed out FREE cookies every Monday since school started. Don't make me regret this, I suddenly wanted to yell, fist pumping in the air.


And then I felt a little sorry again.


It's a roller coaster ride, this simplifying process.


But I did try brussels sprout for the first time EVER in my effort to use all of the produce in my fridge before it went bad. I even have proof:
Brussels sprout at top left corner with pearl onions.
Also featured: fresh pineapple, and lettuce wraps with peppers, chicken, and beans


Not nearly as bad as I had anticipated. Dare I say I might even like them.


I'm so mature now.


Speaking of trying new things, you can FOLLOW me if you haven't already. 

See over there on the right? (a little higher) ------>

If you do, you can enter to WIN OVER $100 worth of cool stuff (and this is before I over-inflate the value of my mix CD). You don't have to enter the giveaway to FOLLOW (ahem Jodi and the other billions of you who haven't felt the charity in your hearts to push a simple button for little ol' me) (sheesh, could I grovel any more? this is getting sad). I will choose a winner tonight! GO on, now!

a

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

doing the Pennsylvania polka

Bless that Punxsutawney Phil.


I will admit that when we first heard this morning that THE Groundhog did not see his shadow, we were thrilled.

photo source


An early spring it is!


Thank you, Phil the groundhog. And we will always love you, Phil... Phil Connors (friend of Ned Riley)!


We celebrated by making groundhog pancakes this morning:



and groundhog cupcakes this afternoon (peanut butter frosting from HERE).


HAPPY GROUNDHOG DAY!

a

suggestions on a Wednesday

I've been watching a lot of movies lately. Documentaries are the new indie (which were the new French films).


May I suggest a few choice options for your weekend (or afternoon):


The King of Kong (A Fistful of Quarters)


I haven't enjoyed a movie this much in YEARS! It was more awesome than words can say, especially because it was REAL. Check out this trailer and then TRUST ME and check it out streaming on Netflix.




For drama with subtitles, I thoroughly enjoyed Defiance.


Of course, it never hurts to have Daniel Craig in any movie (crush, crush) and Liev Schreiber is nice to look at as well. Rated R for war themes.


Another documentary that I recently watched is Exit Through the Gift Shop.


I'm still thinking about this one. To be honest, I am not sure if I really liked it, but it definitely has been on my mind. Genius or crazy? I am still working out the answer on that one. Nominated for an Oscar this year.

Last week I mentioned a great French movie, L'arnacouer or HeartBreaker.


It is subtitled, so you know, and NR (not rated) but I would say PG-13 and I wouldn't watch it with my teenagers (if I had them).


Which leads me to my SONG OF THE WEEK. It, too, is french and sung by the lead actress in HeartBreaker, Vanessa Paradis (also known as Johnny Depp's lady). Have a listen and tell me if you like it:




All four movies are currently streaming on Netflix. I do not get paid to tell you that I am in love with Netflix. It is one of my dearest friends, nonetheless.


If you want to be a dear, DEAR friend, make sure you enter this rad giveaway HERE.

a

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

beaut

seeing my own reflection
which, might I add, may be the cheesiest picture I have done all year.
Steam is an interesting concealer.


I always forget to turn the fan on before I take a shower. Our tiny bathroom has little insulation and my toes immediately freeze when  they touch the cold, wooden floor. To say the shower is tiny is a bit of an understatement. It's minuscule.


During the winter months, the water in the shower doesn't seem to stay warm for very long. My frozen feet burn from the hot water while the rest of my body craves a higher temperature. The steam rises over the shower door and hovers inside the bathroom door. 


When the last of the heat has been squeezed out of the shower head, I wrap a now-damp towel around myself and step back out onto the cold, wooden floor. Better late than never, I turn the switch and the fan begins to turn. Slowly, the steam lifts and separates through the crack in the door and into the ventilation above my head.


I see my silhouette reflecting in the mirror. A quick wipe with the palm of my hand and my face becomes more clear. I lean in for a closer look as the remaining steam and the heat from my breath fog the mirror again. One more wipe and my face returns. I don't lean in as closely as before, but just slightly.  I quickly clean off a bit of leftover mascara. Is it my imagination or are my eyes getting smaller? 


I search for the beauty and try to ignore the pestering thoughts of flaws and age that seem to be yelling blatantly at my reflection. Focus on the positive; ignore the negative.


The steam seems to understand my goal as it works around my face, concealing blotchy areas, spots and age. Today the steam is my ally, encircling me with a glorious haze and ethereal-like quality. My wet hair lies flat and limp next to my face. I force it behind my ears and turn off the fan. Let the steam stay with me a little longer.


What about me is the most beautiful? What do I see in myself that I can proudly proclaim and love?


I see my generous lashes and full eyebrows and consider them. Perhaps I can learn to adore my round cheeks for the youth that they promote. My nose has always been small and I've never once had the thought to have it altered, so there should be some love and acceptance in that.


But the steam rises and I feel more visible. I see that I have changed. I notice that I am not the girl with the green eyes and long lashes. I have laugh lines around my mouth and sadness hiding in my eyes. I am mid-transition. There is a youthfulness that I still can claim, but an acceleration of age that feels imminent when I look deep. I sense my own life, my frailty and my power. I have seen that my body is fragile, but I have also seen its amazing ability and control.


The steam has completely gone and the face I see reflecting in the mirror is not beautiful. Not exactly. It seems to be changing before me, though. I see the eyes glowing with more understanding and purpose. I see the confusion of uncertainty and illness fading. Slowly, but definitely fading. And in its stead I see resilience and gratitude shaping. There is beautiful hope. 

No more concealment from steam; no longer trying to find my surface beauty. But there is a beauty in the transition.


And I do see my beauty.

a


thanks to Jen for prompting this. thanks for all those that have played along and followed me. friends, I'm gifting some great stuff, so go HERE to enter.