Sunday, September 22, 2013

Last day of my 30's

What a weekend! The last of my 30's! Tomorrow I'll celebrate my 40th birthday and I can't wait!!!

I'm happy to say that, unlike many, I look forward to what the next phase of my life will bring...what the upcoming year will bring, how I'll change and grow, and who I'll become. So much has come into my life in this past decade alone. It's taken much effort to live a life of purpose, to seek balance, and to try to be of service to others. These things have brought me happiness, peace, and opportunities. The way I see it, if I continue to do what I've done, I'll get more of what I've got!

I say good night to my 30's, grateful that they have brought me much, and will awake to my 40's with a sense of adventure and fun and excitement!


Greek yogurt and berries
 sauteed veggies, and a steak with bean and rice bowl
Mmm, General Gao's chicken, scallion pancakes, steamed veggies, and rice


 chicken meatball appetizer
 yummy scallop appetizer
 avocado and mango appetizer - delish!!!
 arugula salad with cheese
 chicken with quinoa
 yummy chocolate wedding cake
 giant salad
 pineapple, bacon, and cherry pepper pizza
eggplant, pepperoni, garlic, and basil pizza


 salad & pork loin sammy
leftover Chinese with steamed veggies

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Collision of Lifetimes

My last day in Denver felt like a collision of lifetimes...I know, it's weird. How can spending one day on my own in Denver reduce me to tears whilst sitting in front of a painting?? Specifically, this painting:

The issue lies with me being in Denver, visiting one of my oldest friends. Denver is where the boy from Arizona lives, who I once, a million lifetimes ago, thought I could marry. And this painting, this particular painting is on view in Denver and it normally lives in my favorite city, Washington, D.C., in my favorite a gallery that I can picture, that I can smell, that I can feel...a gallery from yet another lifetime.

That's all it took.

My class is reading Home, by Toni Morrison for their First-Year Seminar this term...they're being asked, I'm being asked, to think about the concept of HOME. What is it? Does it change? How does it change? Is it a place? Is it a feeling? How does it shape, mold and change us? The painting combined with my mind working on this topic was all it took. All of the places and people and times that I've called home collided in me today. That feeling was overwhelming and left me sobbing and sniffling in front of this painting.

Boston was supposed to be where I would live for 3 years. It was never supposed to become home. Three years passed and it has never been the right time to leave. Somewhere in there, Boston became a home. Somewhere in there, I got my shit together. Somewhere along the way, Boston, and the people and opportunities it has afforded me have, changed me. What's strange though is that when I go back to my old homes, they still feel like they fit. Can Home be many places? Can Home be a time? Can Homes collide in one body? Why, yes, they can, and did.

Am I meant to stay in Boston much longer? Do I want to experience another city? I don't know. I do know that recent opportunities can lead to much greater things. Things that must be weighed and measured. For now, Boston is Home. For today, I'm a collision of lifetimes.


banana, raspberries, and Greek yogurt
 Panera!!! salad and cuppy-cake
more cuppy-cakes!!!!! I admit, I ate two...just not in one day!
Please note, the following items were mostly shared between 3 people

guacamole and sushi
tuna tacos
 sushi (all mine!)
olive oil cake


Panera!!! power egg bowl with steak and a fruit cup
 Big-ass salad from some place called Mad Greens
 Mmm, caramel and chocolate covered marshmallow on a stick!
Dinner to die for! Chicken with grilled veggies - corn, zucchini, squash, mushrooms, eggplant, and onions


First day back to work...

bacon, potatoes, eggs, banana, and pear
 chicken with steamed cauliflower and carrots
 crave-worthy pepperoni pizza for the girl who is too tired after flying all night and not sleeping  (yeah, that'd be me!)
giant salad to cram in that final serving of fruits/veggies for the day

Monday, September 16, 2013

Favorite things

Several days into vaca and I'm doing pretty well with getting lots of veggies. Not perfect, but what ever is?

Today was a nice hike, some shopping, and some good good food! No deep thoughts for the day, no musings on identity, impact, or contrast...just a nod to relaxation. Today was a day filled with some of my favorite things:
time with good friends
outdoor physical activity
a great sale at Coach
good food

Life doesn't really get any better than that. And if you are lucky enough to know to appreciate these things, then you are someone who, from time to time, experiences those moments when your heart is full of gratitude and contentment. At those moments you start to wonder how it's possible that you deserve all of this. Then you stop, and just let it flow over you, surround you, and you laugh or cry at how you have a life that's better than anything you could have otherwise imagined.


green and red chips and salsa

clearly, I did not think that the cold breakfast pizza was worth a photo...
 cobb salad with an extra veggie platter to cram in even more veggies!

Mmmm, lamb shank, with carrots, tomatoes, mushrooms, broccoli, and watermelon feta salad!

Sunday, September 15, 2013


Things to do in Denver? Well, avoiding flooding areas is one of them...yeah. There's tons of flooding going on around my vacation spot while I'm vacationing! There was a little bit of excitement this afternoon as a matter of fact as we tried to get back home and avoid road closures.

While incredibly sad and dramatic, it's certainly not what I want to write about tonight. Tonight, rather, I want to write about ascending Pike's Peak. I took the cog rail to the top, 14,115 feet above sea level. As the train was going uphill, I realized, that when I went skydiving, we jumped from about 14,000 feet! So, the last time I was at 14,000 and outside, I was free-falling to the ground...this time, I had my feet firmly planted on the solid rock of the Rocky Mountains. What a contrast!

I've always believed, and still do, that we have to be able to see contrasts in life. How can you know happiness if you don't know sadness. Can there be beauty without ugliness? Why talk about contrast? Because I felt a feeling today that I have not felt in quite a long time...being up there on that mountain, with very little oxygen. I felt light-headed, my legs were weak, I felt physically drunk. I certainly did not expect that! It's been over seven years since I gave up alcohol for a healthier and better life. Not one day have I looked back and wished I made a different commitment to myself. It was certainly an odd reminder of a contrast in my life.


snack tray with apple, carrots, cheese and almonds to stave off the hunger of the morning
Starbucks protein box with cookie
 chocolate and coconut snack bar
high altitude mini donut
 Corn Nuts! Just like in Heathers...only nobody is dead
 Greek Salad
 Real actual Buffalo chicken wings!!!! Just like from Upstate NY!!!!
fruit crisp dessert pizza

Impact on Others

I had this moment the other day...a moment that reminded me that we never know the impact that we have on the lives of others. I was talking with one of my students about how students in college are all trying to figure out who they are. Whether they are conscious of it or not. She tells me that she feels that she has a good handle on who she is but knows that that who she is will change over time. She recalled an identity exercise we did in class last fall...I barely remember the exercise! She spoke about how her understanding of herself seemed to gel with that exercise and has allowed her to reflect on how her identity has changed over the past year. I love the idea of exploring identity!

This conversation, however, has me interested in exploring the impact that my words and actions have on others...As my own 40th birthday is quickly approaching, I feel like I know myself. I know I'm entering a new phase in my life. I'm not certain what that will entail, but I know that new challenges and new adventures are in front of me.

Moving into my 40's is coming at a time when I'm entering a new phase in my career as well and will have the opportunity to impact the lives of others in new ways. It's time to think about how I can help to lift up other women, what I can do to further my own goals, and how I can bring these same practices into all areas of my life. What conscious effort can I make to further my meditation on this idea? What can I do to focus on what my impact may be? Do I know what I want my legacy to be?


Greek yogurt and peaches
 mushroom risotto, corn, and mixed veggies
buffalo wings and mac & cheese


Greek yogurt and berries
 salad and buffalo chicken pizza
 buffalo wings to share
burger with bacon and gouda, and fries


First meal in Denver, CO

berries and pineapple for breakfast!
We went to dinner at a Mexican restaurant called Tamayo. Sadly, I think I was the only one who loved every bite of her meal. Others were underwhelmed, or did not enjoy the combination of flavors as much as they anticipated

 guacamole with chips and red and green salsa
 guacamole with spicy crab
 carne asada, black beans, green bean and cactus salad, and some sort of bacon-wrapped pepper stuffed with cheese
tower of fire-grilled veggies