Archive | October, 2012

Day 303: a scary week to feel like a kid again

31 Oct

It’s certainly been a scary week over here on the East Coast.

My heart and prayers go out to everyone cleaning up and digging out after this storm.

Since Halloween arrived on schedule, Justin decided we needed a little humor. So we now have matching pajamas for our Halloween costumes.

They aren’t just any pajamas though…
These are full length, all body onesies (splattered with the Patriots logo of course).

We may have had lots of tricks around here this week – Sandy being up to her scariest and delivering an All Hallows Week to Remember…

But, in a way, it has all made me feel like a kid again.

The fright of not knowing or understanding what might happen in a storm.
Wishing and wanting to run into my parents bedroom and duck for cover from said storm.
And, now, turning in for bed in a set of onesies with a zipper all the way down the front.

The only thing missing is a big bucket of candy and kids ringing the front door for treats.

But we have survived worse, haven’t we?
Happy Halloween. 

Day 302: the light at the end of sandy’s tunnel

30 Oct

There seems to be some light at the end of the tunnel.
At least there is a very large moon over the ocean tonight outside our front door.

My heart goes out to those in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and all the other areas who took the brunt of Sandy’s super powers. (If you’re interested, the American Red Cross is still looking for help to aid the most affected areas.)

As for us…

After spending an entire day glued to the tube far away in the suburbs, watching the newscasters report from the shore just down the beach from our house in Situate, we are home and find everything in its place.

Everything outside is of course dripping wet, but the house, windows, stairs, walls, roof are all intact. (Even the Boston Globe has a photo of Scituate on its Facebook banner!)

The sand is super smooth on the beach, as if someone took a lawn mower to it and trimmed it all down to the same height, not even one footprint left.  Rocks dot the landscape.  And, everything is absolutely dripping wet — did I already say that?

If Sandy was the some sort of welcoming committee, I guess we should consider ourselves officially acclimated to the South Shore.

But we are thankful.  And lucky.

Just for the record, while my theme this year is to live fearlessly, this was NOT what I asked for: not for me, not for you and not for anyone else either.

The good news is that most of us are still standing.

Let’s hope all those buried in snow or sand, holding roofs together with shoe strings or waiting for the water to dry up are on their way to seeing the light soon.

Sending you love.

More and more love.
Love, more and more.

xo~Jamie

Day 301: oh, sandy

29 Oct

Really, Sandy? Really?

We moved into our winter seaside rental, not even three weeks ago…

And, now we are seeing an unprecedented storm pummel New England.

Our landlord expects the house to lose some stairs and finished his email with:

“You guys are missing all the fun!”

Here’s the view from Scituate just down the beach from our house. But, we are safely inland in the suburbs with family riding out this storm far, far, far from the front row seats we would have had on the beach.

I think Justin is a little disappointed to miss the show…but we are certainly both happy to be safe and warm.

The power just went out and flickered back on…
So I’m going to call this post done.

Done.

Stay safe and warm.

Day 300: losing my wallet

28 Oct

I did not expect to lose my wallet today.

I am however, grateful for many things:

1) A Red Coat
I left 40-degree Chicago this morning, where I was so GRATEFUL that Pam let me borrow her red coat and take it on the road — because ALL of my winter clothes are still in Florida. Yes, I know, that makes no sense.

2) Geting home
I am also thankful that we beat the storm home tonight and I am tucked in safe and warm with family inland and far away from the beach. Let’s hope this storm blows out to sea or lessens and does not live up to the worst predictions.

3) My wallet
After landing at Logan Airport and riding the bus to South Station I realized I no longer had my wallet. It was in the little brown bag with my books that I accidentally left on a ledge inside the airport while running to catch the bus. It’s a long, silly story that left me feeling pretty stupid.

I reported it to the information desk, to Massport and to the State Police. There was no wallet to be found, just lost.

As I walked the hallways of Logan Airport, the wonderful woman from the Massport Information Desk tried to make me feel better by saying, “You know some people leave really large bags, we once had someone leave their cello.”

It did make me feel better. But, I still felt stupid. Thoughtless. What a waste of time and money and at least one day of my life will now be spent waiting in line at the DMV.

Ironically, through all of this, I was wearing my LOVEMORE+FEARLESS tee-shirt.

Then, just as we drove up the highway, headed home, I received a phone call from Southwest Airlines — they had my wallet. I didn’t fly Southwest Airlines. I have no idea how they got my wallet or who turned it in…

But, thank you to the wonderful soul who did.
It makes me hope that luck is on our side. 

Day 299: that’s a wrap!

27 Oct

As our weekend is coming to a close, so is the amazing Women on Fire retreat here in Chicago.

Here’s one of my favorite photos of the day, of Tandi and I, as we soaked in a few moments of sitting still before we all leave on a jet plane in the direction of home tomorrow.

I have now emerged from our retreat and the “burrito of love” that happens when Debbie Phillips gets more than 70 women in the same room, from all over the country, together sharing their biggest dreams and heartfelt stories.

Back to reality.
And a really big storm.

These are just a few of the headlines staring back at me as I reconnect with the real world and the internet:

And, of course, the one that makes my eyes go wide as pictures of living directly on the beach dance through my head:

Sandy’s Storm Surge a Major Threat

Yup! That’s right. We’ve been in the beach house for not even THREE weeks and there is an unprecedented storm heading in our direction. I literally had to look up the definition of “storm surge” and it basically means — get out of town!

So tomorrow I fly home, and will flee home, all in the same day.
But tonight…

I am going to go to bed dreaming in my blue eye mask:

Here’s to sweet dreams and good wishes for everyone to ride out this storm and stay safe and warm.

Sweet dreams.

Day 298: f*ing friday :: fires

26 Oct

TGIF.
Today continues the weekly series, F*ing Fridays, which will coincidentally occur on Friday. In Year One, I mentioned some of my favorite F words back on Day 5, including: Fearless, Fabulous, Fine, Fun, Faith, Freedom, Forgiveness, to name a Few.

Last week I dove into the word fave.

Today’s F*ing Friday is dedicated to the word:
Fires.

As in, glassybaby.

It was an honor to meet Lee Rhodes from glassybaby today.

She is a three-time cancer survivor. She is the brilliance behind glassybaby. And, she is the reigning (and only female) Entrepreneur of the Year by Entrepreneur Magazine.

You can’t meet Lee and not love her!

I met her because of Melissa McClain and Debbie Phillips. Within seconds of speaking with Lee you can’t help but feel like you’ve known her forever.

Which is probably why I vomited my life story right into her lap upon first handshake. Lee’s so cool and bright, she didn’t seem to mind. I suppose that what we cancer survivors do for each other.

In fact, she is the champion for cancer survivors, thrivers, fighters, families and most of all, her employees who make these brilliant rays of light-holding glass-blown art pieces.

These beautiful pieces are so amazing, they have single handily (literally, blown by hand) built a business that has given away over a million dollars to charity.

Each glassybaby stands for a person, whether it’s the one who made it or the one who will light the flame inside it and watch it flicker and throw pops of color around the vessel, most likely hoping for a brighter day or a better prognosis.

And, I think that’s what makes them wonderful and Lee so bright and YOU so important.

Isn’t it a great reminder that we all matter? We all have a light waiting to be lit. We all know a survivor and sufferer of cancer. We all need a reminder to look on the bright side even through the dark f*ing journey.

In my year of promising to love more and fear less, all I can say is…

Come on baby, don’t just like your fire — light your fires.

Day 297: may the best scent win…and I’m smelly

25 Oct

I spied with my little eye these totally fun lotions today…

It made me wonder …just what would our Founding Fathers think if they saw what we’ve done with their great experiment in democracy.

What would they think of Facebook, Twitter and other virtual election memes?

What would they think of Saturday Night Live skits that mock the election?

What would they think of “eau-lection” body lotion?

And …does it matter?
I suppose it doesn’t, really.

Everything evolves, changes, grows up, spreads wings — gets a little orange and minty.

I kind of love it. 
May the best scent win. 

P.S. For the record I am in full-on event planning mode and have not showered today! Going to take care of that soon…promise.

P.P.S. You can follow this fabulous Women on Fire event on Twitter at #wofretreat (hey, it’s a free world, you can do what you please!)

Day 296: sealing the deal of everyday moments

24 Oct

It’s amazing what can be right out side our front door these days.

Yesterday it was a pile of seaweed. Last week it was a Budweiser can. We have a constant wash ashore of lost shoes, flip flops and bathing trunks.

But this morning sealed the deal.

As Justin looked out the window with sleepy eyes he said to me, “what’s on the beach?”

“What do you mean?” I asked as I buzzed around the house doing some last minute packing for my trip to Chicago. The train was leaving in 30 minutes and I was in full-on focus mode.

“You just took the dogs outside, didn’t you notice that?” He pointed to the shiny mass at the edge of the water.

“Nope.” I sized up my luggage making sure I had everything, half distracted but trying to listen as I peered outside. “What do you think it is?”

“A seal.”

Now he had my attention.

We walked outside to inspect. Or rather, Justin walked outside to inspect and I followed behind, not sure how close I should get to this little thing.

It turned out to be a baby seal, with no mother anywhere in sight.

It looked us right in the eye and didn’t move. Cute like a puppy, but wild nonetheless. So we kept our distance.

I thought about that seal all day today.

Where was its mommy?
Was it sick?
Was it just taking a break from a full belly (as my friend Carol pointed out is sometimes a typical occurrence on the South Shore beaches).

I hope he or she found its way back home. I’m going to believe it did, for my own sake. Regardless, it was the closest I have ever been to such a creature.

And to think that I almost missed this moment this morning because I was so wrapped up in my schedule.

It makes me realize…
Sometimes finding the best moments in life are as easy as just looking up — or right outside the front door. 

(P.S. Photos by Justin Aiken – thanks honey!)

Day 295: brotherly love

23 Oct

Ah… is all I can say.

Love. More. Brotherly love. Night. Night.

Day 294: lovemore monday :: the exit row

22 Oct

As you know, I entered this year determined to be fearless. But, I don’t want more fear or less in my life.  I want more love.  So I made up a new word, lovemore!   That’s why Lovemore Mondays are here.

Today’s Lovemore Monday is a love story about the exit row. 

As in more legroom. Room to stretch. Wide open spaces.

I paid an extra $25 to Spirit Airlines to ride in the exit row on my flight home today.

It cost me money.  It came with responsibility.  But it was so worth it.

“Are you willing to help other passengers if necessary?”

As the flight attendant determined if I was ready and willing to take on the responsibility of an exit row assignment, it occurred to me… shouldn’t every passenger on the plane be ready and willing to help?

It would be a small tweak in the boarding process. Sure, it would take more time. Yes, it would be totally annoying. But, wouldn’t it be better if we were ALL invested in a safe and successful landing?

Instead of being literally stripped and carted through security like criminals… wouldn’t it be better if we all took a pledge OUT LOUD of responsibility to help each other out before the plane left the ground?

Sure, it’s a crazy idea…

But, that’s why, on this Lovemore Monday…

I. Love. It.

 

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