Monthly Archives: February 2011

Never Met a Girl Like You Before

I was dropping off my daughter at school this morning when another mother heard me wish her a good day. She looked at me, did a double take, and asked, “You’re Liliana’s mother?” I nodded.

I literally counted to 20 in my head as she looked me over from head to toe. My mind started racing, wondering what exactly was wrong. I don’t work on Fridays, so I was wearing my ‘mom wear’–usually jeans or yoga pants, TOMS, some sort of t-shirt, and a hoodie or sweater. Today it was jeans, red TOMS, a Kurt Vonnegut shirt, and a pink hoodie. I never fix my hair, even for work, but sloppy chignons or ponytails are pretty standard for moms. I even had on a little make up.

“Huh,” she finally said. “You’re very stylish for one of those kinds of people.”

For those of you who know me, you can probably picture that look I get when I’m confused, where I cock my head like a dog.

“What kind of people?” Teachers? Redheads?

“Well, you always do the whole wheat bread and snacks, like at the Christmas Party, and you did those plantable Valentines–one of those kind of people.”

Then she was gone, leaving me to ponder what she considers ‘those kind of people.’ And how is it they lack style? And what did she mean, qualifying my stylishness?

As I sat in my car, getting ready to exit the parking lot, I was trapped in a glass and metal case of confusion. Is there something wrong with whole wheat bread for PB&J? Was I wrong to send Valentines that can be planted to grow wildflowers instead of candy and paper cards that will end up in a landfill? Am I that poorly dressed? And we already know the drama of the Gingerbread men (and women–I included girls not to be biased).

Then I thought about this woman and her apparently small world of experience where just because I give thought to what I feed my child and how my actions impact the future, not just the now, I should be wearing a potato sack and not know what mascara is for. And then rolled my eyes, shook my head, and drove my son in his cloth diapers and Amber teething beads home to do yoga to the sounds of Guns N Roses.

She can suck it.

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Categories: The Little People and Furry Friends | Tags: | 1 Comment

Go to Where Movies are Available for Rent . . .

So I’ll admit it– I love me some Inside the Actor’s Studio. The flow of pretension, Lipton’s over the topic enunciation and a flagrant pandering–Love. It.

My life seems to be escalating in complications with my kids, my grad class, my work, and all those other things that are gathering like water in a barrel. So this week I will cheat a bit in the area of my life where it will be the easiest: my blog.

These 10 questions originally came from a French series, Bouillon de Culture hosted by Bernard Pivot.

They're better known as the questions that James Lipton asks every guest at the end of Inside the Actor's Studio show.


  1. What is your favorite word? Theoretically.
  2. What is your least favorite word? Poop.
  3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? Rain, Prince, Ravel’s “Bolero,” Margaret Atwood, Henry Miller, The Kinks, Walking, Yoga
  4. What turns you off? Excuses
  5. What is your favorite curse word? Mother-fucker (followed by jackass)
  6. What sound or noise do you love? My kids laughing, my husband’s whistling
  7. What sound or noise do you hate? Whining
  8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Fashion design
  9. What profession would you not like to do? Complaint Department at any company
  10. If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? You gotta hear this LP of “Purple Rain” live.

 

And finally, this lovely clip for your enjoyment. Because I too would not like to “Burn monkeys.”

 

Categories: Let Me Entertain You | Tags: | Leave a comment

What’s in a Date?

My husband doesn’t know when our wedding anniversary is. It’s January 5. He thinks it’s December 21. But unlike the cliche, he doesn’t know for a good reason.

We were acquaintances in high school and then met again and became friends. That friendship blossomed in a very short time to a best friendship. In the years since we got together, he has revealed to me, “I didn’t want us to happen–I didn’t want a relationship, but I just couldn’t be without you.”

This past week, perhaps due to the upcoming holiday, I have had several conversations about relationships, in particular my marriage. What I tell people is that my husband and I were happy being single. We had both just ended terrible relationships and felt no need to be involved with anyone else. But when it came down to it, we just couldn’t help it.

In sitcom world, I married my rebound. In my world, I married my first and last love.

My husband has told me that he tried to keep from asking me out as long as he could. He finally gave in when he knew that there was not anyone else for him and that he would marry me. Our friendship was so amazing, he wouldn’t have risked it for anything less than forever.

So in his mind the day he finally asked me out on a date, December 21, is our anniversary because that is the day our lives together and our family began.

I don’t mind one little bit.

XO

A

Categories: Life and Other Nonsense | Tags: | Leave a comment

In the Moment

This week’s blog is a special request topic: yoga. My relationship with yoga goes back 13 years to my freshman year at NYU. As an acting student at Tisch, I was required to take a movement class as part of my acting studio. My luck of the draw in the Meisner studio? Yoga.

At the time the connection between the two seemed sketchy at best. In retrospect, there is one fundamental value that links them both without question. Both the Meisner acting technique and yoga require that the participant free themselves from the confines of their own head and truly exist in the moment.

As a heady girl by nature, this was not an easy task in either field of study. I couldn’t act out against the acting part, so I passively resented the yoga part. I had been a dancer up to that point and yoga fought against so much of what I had been taught in years of ballet—turned in, Buddha belly, and no judgments. Not really my thing. On the flip side, my flexibility played to my advantage (my lotus has always been lovely).

It took me a year to let go of my adolescent stubbornness and give in to the experience. I regret now that I was so reluctant because my instructor was an incredible woman. I have never seen anyone so centered, calm, and blissful. She owned a private studio which occasionally played host to guest teachers like Rodney Ye.

The downside of Blissful Barbara is that she unknowingly made me a yoga snob. Barbara had studied yoga for years and had a deep understanding of not only the postures, the philosophy at the core of the practice. This was around the time that Madonna came out with Ray of Light and suddenly yoga became trendy. People were getting certified who had only studied yoga for a number of months. I later read an article that talked about the rise in yoga related injuries do to these fair-weather yogis.

This has made me very wary of yoga teachers and I have only found a handful worth my time. In the present day, my relationship with yoga has shifted. I do not have the time to practice the deep, more complex poses that I once loved (my Bridge pose has gone to hell). Rather I tend to do very simple poses to allow my mind to clear and become unencumbered.

My other primary practice of yoga is with my children. With the books of Helen Garabedian as my guide, I do yoga with my 7-month old and my 4-year old. Sometimes I practice with them separately, sometimes we do things together. They both love the time and get excited when I get the mats out. It’s a great way for us to interact, especially in the winter. I remember Blissful Barbara talking about how children make the best yogis because so much of their lives are lived in the moment. They have not learned the faults of their parents: judgment, doubt, fear. Garabedian has a great idea that she reminds you to say to your baby: You are the perfect baby for me and I am the perfect Mommy for you. I have to remind myself of this sometimes when I am cracking under the pressure of being everything and nothing to everyone all at once.

By the way, Liliana does a wicked good Tree and Alexander may be doing Downward Facing Dog before he can crawl.

For those interested, check out www.itsybitsyyoga.com. There is a link to classes offered across the country. If you are like me and live in the middle of nowhere, I recommend her books Itsy Bitsy Yoga and Itsy Bitsy Yoga for Toddlers and Preschoolers.

Namaste,

A

Categories: The Little People and Furry Friends | Tags: | Leave a comment

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