36 Things on my 36th Birthday

This year has been a year full of adventures, travels, growth, love, and friendship. I have had a great year! I try to always learn something even when life is determined to be frustrating. It has all been worth it! 

 Here are some of the things I learned in my 36th year. 

  1. Even “mild” winters in the Northeast are rough for a Texas girl. 
  2. Five hour flights, seated between teenage boys who do not belong to you, are tortuous. 
  3. The sun is an important ingredient for sanity. 
  4. Adventures with my son trump any other adventure. He will always be my favorite travel buddy. 
  5. It does not matter where you meet someone if you have a real connection. 
  6. I underestimate my abilities frequently. 
  7. The peace I feel staring at large bodies of water is a spiritual experience. 
  8. Loyalty does not mean I can never move on.
  9. The same goes for appreciation. 
  10. My family will always support my dreams. 
  11. Just because he is dreamy and hot… does not mean he is not riddled with douchebaggery.
  12. Too many first dates in one week leaves me drained and ceases to be fun. 
  13. Bruce Springsteen is the most amazing performer ever. Which can set you up to be blindsided by his other fanatic fans. Just enjoy the show. That’s all you need for a magical evening.
  14. A good waiter makes a fantastic meal even better. 
  15. Sometimes it is okay to splurge on the ridiculously expensive purse. Well, only if you really love it. 
  16. Meeting new people requires a willingness to engage in conversation. 
  17. Binging on Netflix documentaries can make me a little crazy. (Keep in mind the filmmakers have their own agenda.)
  18. Red lipstick makes me feel like a million bucks. (Although, it’s important to keep in mind the fact it transfers when you are kissing someone. Oops.) It’s okay- it was totally his color. 
  19. It’s okay that I completely changed my entire belief system. It’s also okay that I am still learning about what I believe. 
  20. I still idolize newsmen. Spotlight was a phenomenal movie and I geeked out seeing journalists as heroes. 
  21. 20 minutes is plenty of time to spend looking at one of the wonders of the world. As long as you get a selfie. 
  22. Good natural light beats a filter any day. 
  23. Sometimes you see a picture of a dog and you know they belong in your family no matter the price or distance. 
  24. Honesty and open communication allow for amazingly intimate relationships. 
  25. The people who love you are not trying to fix you. They love you for who you are at that moment. 
  26. Good friends keep life interesting and keep the loneliness at bay. 
  27. Yoga hurts. Yoga speaks to me. Yoga haunts me. I have mixed feelings about yoga. Obviously. Sigh. 
  28. The miasmic hospital air cannot ruin your life if you find interests outside your career. This sentence is every bit as pretentious as I want it to be. 
  29. I will never be lost if I know where my home is. It’s with my family and the other people I love. 
  30. I have a lot of different definitions of love. I don’t owe anyone an explanation. I get to do it just like Sinatra taught me. “My Way.” 
  31. It’s perfectly acceptable for my career to be about having a job. It does not need to define me. 
  32. My mother is still the first person I want to call with any big or little news. 
  33. I can’t stop buying and reading books. It’s an addiction for me. One I won’t give up. 
  34. Rental cars pretty much suck. Oh, and 100 on signs in Montreal does not mean mph. 
  35. Writing is still my favorite thing. I am still finding my voice and learning how to be authentic.
  36. You can’t tell the ones you love how much you love them often enough. Don’t save it for drunken ramblings… That diminishes the power of the statement. 
  37. And one to grow on: The comma still frustrates me immeasurably. Damn punctuation. 

All in all- it’s been a great year! I am pretty sure this year is going to be just as exciting! 
*I really like black and white shirts. It may be time to branch out more color wise. 

To be 17.


I spent some time last night looking at pictures of you. I know you are rapidly becoming a man, yet I still see you as the little boy with the backpack bigger than he is. 

I can’t believe you are turning 17. Where did all the time go? As you rush into adulthood I want you to remember one thing: I am always here for you. 

If things get hard and you don’t know what to do.

When you have your first heartbreak. 

When you get the news you have been waiting for. 

Those times you find something so absurd you don’t believe it is real. 

When you are so excited you want to call someone and ramble on about it. 

When you see a movie that changes your perspective. 

That song that makes you smile and feel young and free? I want to hear it too. 

As you grow up and become a man, I want you to know I will always be the safe place for you to return. You will always have a free pass to be exactly who you are when you are with me. I will be your champion, cheerleader, defender, and biggest fan. 

Most importantly, I want you to follow your dreams. I want you to work hard to achieve the life you want to live. I want you to love and be loved. 

You are still my baby boy. I hate to break it to you but that will never change. I love you more than anything else. 

Happy Birthday. Enjoy your last year of childhood. Being a grownup can wait one more year. 

Ummm… is this what 35 is supposed to look like?

Yes! It is a tiara. With Glitter. And, yes those are bubbles in my scepter. Why? Because I am a princess. Every one thinks so.

Seriously. What age is it when you finally have it all figured out? I really thought 25 would be it. Then, 28 seemed like it would be the year. Now, here I am at 35…. and I am still pretty much flailing away, and figuring it all out as I go. Sigh.

There is some good news: Every thing is awesome. I get to be and do anything I am willing to try to work for. That is a liberating feeling.

I am on a path of many wonderful adventures.

If you had asked me 20 years ago who I would be at 35, I would have been so wrong. Turns out, I am still the same girl. I only wish I had been a little nicer to her.

So, having a great time. Surrounded by thoughtful and hilarious friends. I promise you, I have never laughed so hard continuously before. Good times, Good beer, and I may have had lemon cake for breakfast.


16 things I learned from my son’s 16 years

My son just turned 16 years old.

What? I know, right? I am certainly not old enough to have a 16 year old. That is what happens when you have a baby entirely too young.

I have learned some things from being his mom, and here they are.

  1. I worry all the time.
  2. I never feel like you have done enough.
  3. I will never love anything as much as I love him.
  4. He will not go to sleep when I think he should- EVER.
  5. He will have his own thoughts and ideas; completely independent of me.
  6. He will find things interesting that bore me to tears.
  7. There is no one in the world who is more handsome.
  8. There are never enough hugs.
  9. I really don’t want him to drive, it just does not seem safe.
  10. It is hard to separate his needs from his wants. (I want to give him everything!)
  11. His taste in music annoys me to no end.
  12. He really does not care what shirt I want him to wear.
  13. He has strange ideas regarding a balanced diet. (Really? Ramen again?)
  14. He really wants me to let him go to Japan.
  15. He will always ask to drive, even if I don’t want to let him drive.
  16. I enjoy the time I get to spend with him more than anything else.

My son is the most important person in my life. I love him so much that to try to describe it would be ridiculous. I am so proud of him, and he is such a special young man.

I want him to grow up and be anything he wants to be. I want him to use his skills and talents to leave a mark on the world. I want him to be comfortable being himself.

So, my familiar refrain: I am a lucky girl. Somehow, I got to be this kid’s mother, and I am so happy that I did.

Happy Birthday! I love you so much!