A time for everything under heaven

IMG_4717 22 years ago today, my heart tore in half when my son Douglas died of cancer – a teratoma, not unlike what Gavin had removed about two years ago.

The hospital room was so quiet and it smelled of tears. Tears that fell from my eyes like endless rivers of sorrow.

I thought I’d never stop crying.

I stopped believing in God. Stopped singing.

My ex husband got me a dog, Mac, to get over my grief and having that dog to pour all my love into brought me back to life.

He was a four legged replacement for the son I lost.

Sadly, 12 years ago today (on the 10 year anniversary of Douglas’ death), Mac’s life ended in a freak freeway accident on Highway 80.

So you COULD say that September 22 is my least favorite day of the year.

You could say that but you’d be wrong.

Because instead of spending the day grieving, I spend the day having fun and feeling alive.

Last year was rough because my nephew’s birthday party fell on what would have been Douglas’ 21st birthday and NO ONE REMEMBERED.

This year I’m going to celebrate my nephew’s birthday again.

It’s an opportunity to HONOR my loved ones and CELEBRATE everything that is wonderful and beautiful in my life – like wonderful friends, close knit families, and LOVE.

And I’ll celebrate the lives of the two kids that I have.

So happy September 22nd to all my friends. I hope it’s a happy one for you too.

“I’m not perky.”

I bought a new costume!

Can you guess what it’s for?

I’ll show you the dress and maybe you can guess:

Prim and proper black A-line dress, white collar. . .

What could it be for?

It’s for Wednesday Addams from the Addams family!

Did you guess right?

I love Wednesday Addams.

I can totally relate to being a young girl and not fitting in with the in-crowd.

To being different and being made fun of.

And to a little bit wanting to make a face at the bitches who made my life difficult just for their own pleasure.

So here are a few Wednesday Addams quote, to darken your day or lighten it up depending on your attitude:

“Are they made from real Girl Scouts?”

“You severely underestimate my apathy.”

“I’m not perky.”

I’ll clean my room in exchange for your immortal soul.”

“This is my costume. I’m a homicidal maniac. They look just like everyone else.”

Angel wings

not much going on in my life due to covid-19.

Some posts, I’ve noted, are better than others.

But seeing as how my goal is to write every day and post at least once a day, I’m going to just go with it.

What I write, I post.

Whether it’s a fascinating story about Micro Burn or climbing Half Dome or whether it’s about shopping or costumes.

My latest project is to make a pair of angel wings.

I found THIS pair with EL wire online for a whopping $115:

I love them but $115 seems a little steep so I’ve decided I’m going to make my own with white fairy lights and these $35 wings:

I think I can mark the edges every inch or so around the border and use glue to stick the lights to the wings.

I think. . .

You can all see the final results when I’m done.

I’m crossing my fingers that it turns out good.

Coming to a Zoom near you. . .

Not surprisingly, I have a collection of nightgowns and slips to wear to bed that rivals most boudoir collections.

When I went to Sweden, the Swede provided me with a modesty robe to wear over my nightgown so that I wouldn’t surprise his teenage daughter in the hallway wearing a nightgown with a plunging neckline.

They’re all pretty sexy but as I get older (and since I’m living in loungewear due to covid-19), I am realizing that I need more subdued nightwear that can transition to day wear – at least in my house.

I went online and bought three nightgowns I thought would fit the bill:

A galaxy nightgown, a rabbit nightgown, and a cactus nightgown.

A lot of people think I must sleep in the nude.

I’m here to tell you I do not.

When you have a house filled with people, you never know who is going to walk in and need to talk.

All the nightgowns have arrived and I’ve tried them on and I must say, I think I’ve done pretty good for myself.

So good in fact, that my mom has declared that I could wear these nightgowns out of the house and on the street.

I wouldn’t go that far, but at least it’s something I can wear around the house and feel comfortable in.

Now debuting in a Zoom near you. . .

Big girl, you are beautiful

When you’re programmed to believe from a young age that your body shape is wrong and needs to be fixed, it’s hard to combat decades of self-doubt.

I challenge my years of learned self-doubt by filling my Instagram stream with plus size models.

Size 12, size 20, size 22+?

They’re all in there.

[Just as an aside, I also follow mainstream beauties like Swimsuit Illustrated, Kate Upton, and Heidi Klum.]

They’re all beautiful women showing off their womanly bodies which don’t adhere to mainstream body guidelines.

And of course, I found this little song which is a like an earworm, it just can’t be unheard once you hear it:

“Big girl, you are beautiful.”

Not a bad chorus to have bouncing around in your head.

Why just yesterday in a fit of body confidence I slipped into a new Little Black Dress and went out with my friend Big Joe to get beers in Campbell at Out Of The Barrel.

Heels, wrap, big hair, LBD – the whole shebang.

Let people look, I figured.

In the end, no one died because I felt good about my non-mainstream body shape.

Although it certainly does feel like the world is coming to an end when you’re in the middle of a pandemic AND firestorm.

The whole time I was singing in my head, “Big girl, you ARE beautiful!”

Don’t laugh

Don’t laugh.

You know that salons have been closed due to covid?

Well, it’s been 6+ months since I had my nails done.

Needless to say they need some love.

I’m so obsessed with nail care that I finally find all those manicure videos on Facebook really interesting.

But it’s not just your standard nail care videos that I watch.

I watch those videos when women get super long skinny sculpted ballerina nails which render the user completely unable to use her hands for anything but the most languorous of activities.

I watch videos by Naio Nails UK.

Now, you probably don’t know of Naio Nails and have never heard of it.

Naio Nails UK is the brain child of a very colorful British nail designer Kirsty Meakin (I think).

She crafts the MOST OUTRAGEOUS blingy, sequined, glitterified nails I’ve ever seen!

And even though it would be a total waste on me. . .

I WANT THEM!

How Kirsty has the patience to sculpt and sand and shape these works of art is beyond me.

But she has THE MOST creative ideas and should I ever find myself in her neck of the wood (somewhere across the pond, I suspect by her accent), I will make myself an appointment to get myself a set of truly DECADENT nails!

Why the F not?

You know, it’s possible that this collecting costume thing is getting out of hand.

I literally have hundreds of them.

I used to collect shoes and ball gowns.

Now it’s costumes and Burning Man outfits.

All of this is just a preface to me saying this:

I bought another costume today.

I bought a Cher outfit.

Not THAT Cher.

I’m no slim Armenian-American pop star.

Not even close, though the attempt to do a Cher costume would be HILARIOUS!

No, I meant Cher from Clueless.

THAT Cher.

I bought the yellow plaid schoolgirl costume:

Why?

Because honestly every time I see that costume, I get a little giggly.

And because they made it in my size.

So why the F not?

Cobra Kai

There’s something you should be watching on Netflix and I’m here to tell you about it.

For all you I-was-a-child-of-the-80s fans, there’s a newish show called Cobra Kai.

Not surprisingly, it’s about the Karate Kid, all grown up with a family and living in the same town as his karate nemesis – Johnny Lawrence from the Cobra Kai Dojo.

Johnny, a down-on-his-luck handyman of sorts decides to restart the Cobra Kai dojo and this is the story that unfolds.

It excites me to tell you that there are MANY of the original cast members including Ralph Macchio as Daniel LaRusso and William Zabka as Johnny.

Unlike the Karate Kid, instead of having characters be all good or all bad, this show delves into and develops characters based on the notion that people aren’t all black or white but shades of gray.

It’s kind of a thrill to watch William Zabka reprise his role as Johnny and struggle with being an absentee father to his son and training a dojo filled with misfits and outsiders.  And I really enjoy seeing Daniel LaRusso struggle with parenting his kids and running a successful auto dealership and dojo.

And of course, it’s GREAT to see the Karate Kid again, doing what he does best – kicking butts and looking cute.

But let’s be honest, William Zabka has Ralph Macchio beat when it comes to good looks and charm.

I’ve always been a sucker for blonds.

Whoever was sitting in a brainstorming session at Netflix and suggested that someone make a spin off show based on the Karate Kid was BRILLIANT and I’d like to offer him or her my most sincere thanks.

AND making the story be told as a narrative from Johnny’s point of view creates a lovely juxtaposition between the past and the present, as evidenced by historical scenes from the original 80s movies interspersed between the current storylines.

Let me tell you this. . .

When John Kreese, Johnny’s ORIGINAL Cobra Kai sensei reappears, played by the same actor, Martin Kove, I just about died of happiness.

I’m loving this resurgence of love for the 80s!

Next up?!

A sequel to The Goonies!

Please. . .

Prayers

Photo: Jessica Christian

I live in Northern California.

Unsurprisingly, due to the fires burning near my home, things have been crazy around here lately, starting with the orange-ochre colored sky.

It looks like nighttime at ten in the morning.

I remember being in Sweden during winter in 2017 and seeing the sky go dark at 3 pm.

This reminds me a little of that except it’s creepy, like being stuck in a sepia toned picture.

Gone are the blue skies and fluffy clouds I’m so familiar with.

Instead there’s a red sun and ash falling from the sky.

It’s on my car.

On the pool cover.

Even on the canopy set up in the backyard.

It’s an eerie feeling, living in the dark during the daytime.

Barbara posted on Facebook that she had to drive to work with her headlights on AT NOON.

So I know that it’s more than just me feeling displaced and out-of-sorts.

My prayers go to those people who have lost loved ones and property to the fires.

Pray for California (and Oregon and Washington).

Matter of fact, pray for the world.

We need it.