Thursday, June 19, 2014

One Wish

Imagine if you could be granted one wish. Would there be no hesitation in your mind about what you'd wish for? Before you answer that question, ask yourself why you feel you want what it is you believe you want. It might have suited you some time ago, but does it suit you now? That's the question coming events pose. It's time to consider if what you want is something you want more out of habit than actual desire and this will help you identify and attain what you truly need.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Tyler Knott Gregson Makes Me Swoon

I want this. I want that. I want photos of us. I want to be proud of us out loud. I want to kiss you. I want to smile and laugh. I want to make you giggle and I want to make you sigh and I want to take your breath away and I want to dance with you at people’s weddings and I want to pick you up and carry you when your feet are tired and I want to wait until you are Almost asleep and then kiss your nose and make you laugh so hard with some secret joke that your belly hurts and you smack me for waking you all the way up so we have to get out of bed and sit and watch the city lights while eating a bowl of cereal at 1:38 am. I want to smell you fresh from a shower and paint your toenails and take you to baseball games and teach you hidden things that are going on that most people don’t know. I want us. I want the smell of pancakes when it’s me that cooks them and the sun hasn’t yet woken.  I want the smell of dinner when it’s us that burned it because we fell to the floor and made love instead.  I want the handprints on car windows, steamed up from the inside.  I want long baths followed by short showers and the scent of your shampoo staining my hands for the entire day to follow.  I want ears that hear the words I spill instead of eyes that read them.  I want notebooks black with ink from all the details I noticed from all the times I sat and marveled at the way you spin through an hour.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

4.19 Daily Haiku on Love

"All I really want 
is to roll over to you 
and tell you my dreams." 
- Daily Haiku on Love

Thursday, March 27, 2014

47 in 34: Reader Questions

Today's question is from Darin in Riverside CA - If you could have been anything in the world you wanted to be, other than a human being, what would it be ?

Oh, that's a good one, Darin. I've thought about it and, keeping in mind that I can be anything other than human, I made a list. Ready? Here we go:

  • all the good parts of a weekend music festival
  • the mannequin in Coco Chanel's room because it got to wear all of her fabulous fashions
  • the Crown Jewels because others marvel at, covet and are made happy by seeing them - whether on display or as adornment
  • a Philip Treacy fascinator (
  • some fantastic place which makes someone feel happy and safe and loved and free and filled with joy; a place no one wants to leave

What would YOU want to be? Sound off in the comments section.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

47 in 36: Size Matters (repost)

Originally posted in 2007.

By the time I turned 16, I was 6'2" tall. I told everyone I was 5'11" because a) it was tall, but not freakishly tall and b) I didn't know of any woman who was over 6' tall.

Along with being tall came the issue of shoes. *sigh* I'm a 12. Yeah, I know. My Mom & Grams used to tell me "If your feet were any smaller, you'd fall over." At the time, I'd have gladly fallen over. Over and over! All through junior high and 9th grade, I wore white Nike tennis shoes with a blue or red swoosh. That's all I could find! Payless Shoes was non-existent. So, I suffered in tennis shoes. By the end of 9th grade, I had discovered catalogs. Fairly decent shoes in my size. Through these catalogs, I discovered the espadrille. The gorgeous canvas shoe with the slight heel wrapped in rope. Oh, how I longed for a pair of espadrilles! Sadly, espadrilles were only offered up to a size 10.

The summer of 1982 found my family in Baltimore for vacation. We had decided to do our back-to-school shopping there - no doubt we'd find 'cool' stuff not available in our hometown. While browsing the mall windows, I happened upon a shoe store with espadrilles. The very same espadrilles I'd been drooling over for months in catalogs were now right in front of my face, begging to be touched. I walked in.

"Taupe espadrilles in size 10 please."

The box suddenly appeared, containing my beloved espadrilles. "I'm sorry, we only have white in size 10." No matter! Canvas. Easily cleanable.

I carefully opened the box, peeling back the packing paper which covered my espadrilles. Sparkling white, perfectly wrapped rope around the heel, the smell of canvas. Ahhh! Afraid to touch them, but anxious to put them on, I pulled the shoes out of the box. I couldn't get the stockings on my feet fast enough.



I shoved...uh, I mean...gingerly slipped my foot into the espadrille. It fits! It fits! This must be how Cinderella felt. Filled with such elation, I put on the other shoe. It fits! It fits! I stood up. Ok...this is good. I walked a couple of steps. Ok...this is good too. I turned and walked back. I could not stop staring at the espadrilles. The shoes I wanted were actually on my feet!

Now, while this is going on, my Mom and sister are clucking: they don't fit, they're too small, your toes are scrunched at the top, etc. Uhh...hellooo! My feet. I'm fine. My espadrilles. Oh, happy day! I have espadrilles, I have espadrilles!

Fast-forward to the first or second week of school. I am decked out in my new outfit, complete with white espadrilles and I look good. I made it through 1st and 2nd periods with no problem (solely due to the fact that the classes were across the hall from one another and very close to my locker). 3rd period? That didn't go as well. Ihobbled...uh, I mean...had to walk to the middle of the campus. Luckily, I was in the office, so sitting offered sweet relief. The rest of the day was all downhill from there. 

By the time school was over, I was cursing my espadrilles. I couldn't walk, I was in such pain. I literally shuffled home. Like a geisha.

Hell yeah, I wore those espadrilles again!

Monday, March 24, 2014

47 in 37: Kids

A friend/co-worker stopped me this morning, asking how my countdown to 47 is going. As much as I'm getting to be okay with 47, I feel Teenage Rissa is coming 'round, too.

All of the things I expected to have and all of the things I expected to be by now, hurt a little less when I say them out loud. I've written these things down several times. But, rarely have I said them out loud to others. And that sat with me all of the day.

Look, I know I don't want kids. I'm good with kids and I love kids. I just know kids are not for me. Over the past several years, I've told myself it's because the kid-having window is closing. I still had time, if I wanted time. I could still flow freely in and out of that window. Yet, I've known in my heart of hearts having kids is not for me. I held onto the thought for so long because I felt marginalized by those who have kids. "You don't know love until you have a child of your own!" Hey, thanks. THAT doesn't hurt. Nodding and saying "Some day..." is much easier to say and easier to handle. Now, it's much easier to admit the truth. OK, I lied. It's becoming much easier to admit the truth. Out loud. To others.

:sigh: Realizations are heavy, man. In your head, they are one thing. They are a completely different beast when you've said them and they're out there.

I had a whole lot more written...I'm just not ready to share all of it. This is too much - even for me.

So, tell me - what good/funny/loving thing did your kid(s) do today?

Sunday, March 23, 2014

47 in 38: Guilty Pleasures (III of III)

Name six pleasures you once considered guilty but have now either abandoned or made peace with:

  1. Eating ice cream. Anytime.
  2. Reading gossip blogs. Have you read Lainey Gossip?! Oh. Em. Gee. The girl nails it. Every. Time.
  3. Going to English Beat shows. 
  4. Sleeping away some of my weekends.
  5. The time I spend on Twitter and Instagram.
  6. Reading good ol' trashy novels. I do love me some Jackie Collins and Nora Roberts.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

47 in 39: Guilty Pleasures (II of III)

Name six guilty pleasures you wish you had the courage to indulge:

1. Audition for a theater play. 
2. Submitting one of my essays to a magazine
3. Doing stand-up or a spoken word gig
4. Buying a pair of made-for-me designer shoes
5. A housekeeper 
6. A small nose piercing or small, secret tattoo

Do you have any guilty pleasures you wish you could indulge?

Friday, March 21, 2014

47 in 40: Guilty Pleasures (I of III)

Name six guilty pleasures no one would suspect you of having:
  1. I love watching Thomas the Train & Friends on Sunday morning. I usually wake up early to watch then go back to sleep.
  2. I have over 30 The Brady Bunch and Saved by the Bell episodes on my DVR. I watch them when nothing else on TV appeals to me.
  3. When I visit my parents, nine times out of ten, my mom and I watch one of my pageant videos.
  4. I love socks! Crazy, colorful, fuzzy, funky knee socks.
  5. I keep crayons and a coloring book in my nightstand.
  6. I smoke clove cigarettes once in a while. 

What are some of your guilty pleasures?

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

47 in 43: Fill in the Blanks

I give you money and send you into the grocery store to pick up 5 items. You can only pick one thing from the following departments...what do you get?

1. Produce: avocado
2. Bakery: King's Hawaiian rolls
3. Meat: carne asada
4. Frozen: Drumsticks!
5. Dairy: Brie

Let's say we're heading out for a weekend getaway. You're only allowed to bring 3 articles of clothing with you. So, what's in your bag?

3 articles of clothing?! COME. ON. I need 3 pieces of luggage for a weekend!

1. LBD
2. a pair of dark denim
3. black sweater

If I was to listen in on your conversations throughout the day, what 5 phrases or words would I be most likely to hear?

1. "Seriously?!"
2. "No problem. It's what I do."
3. "I hate people."
4. "You're welcome."
5. "That's my job."

So, what 3 things do you find yourself doing every single day, and if you didn't get to do, you probably wouldn't be in the best mood?

1. eating breakfast
2. listening to music
3. laughing

We're talking a 3-hour block with nobody around. What 5 activities might we find you doing?

1. napping
2. reading Twitter
3. taking BuzzFeed quizzes
4. online shopping
5. writing

We are going to the zoo. But, it looks like it could start storming, so it'll have to be a quick visit. What 3 exhibits do we have to get to?

1. Giraffes
2. Lions
3. Seals or Sea lions

You just scored tickets to the taping of any show that comes on t.v. of your choice. You can pick between 4, so what are you deciding between?

1. Law & Order: SVU
2. Ellen
3. Pretty Little Liars
4. Tonight Show w/Jimmy Fallon

You're hungry for ice cream. I'll give you a triple dipper ice cream cone. What 3 flavors can I pile on for ya?

1. Moose Tracks
2. Chunky Monkey
3. Baskin Robbins' German Chocolate Cake

Somebody stole your purse/wallet…in order to get it back, you have to name 5 things you know are inside to claim it. So, what's in there?

1. Burt's Bees Beeswax Lip Balm
2. keychain iPhone charger
3. NARS matte lip pencil in Damned
4. a bottle of Aleve
5. my work ID

You are at a job fair, and asked what areas you are interested in pursuing a career in. Let's pretend you have every talent and ability to be whatever you wanted, so what 4 careers would be fun for you?

1. Wine bar owner
2. shoe designer
3. stylist
4. photographer for Rolling Stone magazine

If you could go back and talk to the old you, when you were in high school, and inform yourself of 4 things, what would you say?

1. Do NOT get a perm. Repeat - do not get a perm!
2. Stand up straight. Everyone would love to be as tall as you.
3. You chose good friends.
4. Don't buy the espadrilles! You'll have to walk home and you'll be sad. But, you'll have a great story to tell your friends later! And they'll never let you forget it. 

Monday, March 17, 2014

47 in 44: Mailbag

Today, we delve into the mailbag to answer reader questions.

Becky, a reader from Riverside CA asks what is my biggest regret EVER. 

Well, Becky...I don't have any regrets. Have I made poor choices? Yep. Have I made questionable decisions? Uh huh. Have I done things that cause me to make that scrunched up cringe-y face? Without a doubt. I chalk 'em all up to lessons learned. 

I do wish I never entered into an abusive relationship. The thing is, you never know it'll be abusive until you're already in it! I wish I had the strength to leave. I wish I had the knowledge and the tools to leave. That being said, if I was never in that relationship, I wouldn't be the person I am now. Corny, cliche','s the truth. 

Along the same line, is a question from Monica, also from Riverside CA: "If you could go back in time what would you change?" 

There are a few instances where I let my insecurity and fear take over; really wish I'd have more confidence in myself.

Next, a question from Lori in Washington state: What five (5) things would you like to accomplish before your 50th birthday?

Lori, thanks for your question. Even though you mention the "F" word. Let me deal with the rest of my 40s. I'll breakdown soon enough!

5 Things:
- complete the Artist Management program/find a band to manage
- get another country stamp in my passport
- be able to say I have a handle on my hoarding
- see the Northern Lights
- be in love again

That's all the time we have today, folks! Thanks for the great questions - keep 'em coming!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

3.16 Daily Haiku on Love

"I am growing old
and I’m doing it alone. 
Won’t you age with me?"
by Tyler Knott Gregson

47 in 45: Quirks Edition

I sleep in my glasses.

Until I moved into this apartment, I'd lived with roommates. I was so excited to finally live on my own. 

The week I moved in, I started reading a book about a landlord who assaulted women living on their own for the first time.

Since my first night here, I've worn my glasses to sleep.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

3.15 Daily Haiku on Love

"I split in pieces,
a murmuration of me,
they all flew to you." 

by Tyler Knott Gregson

47 in 46 - The Name Game (repost)

(Originally written/posted in 2009.)

the following is an in-class writing assignment in which we have 10 minutes to write about a particular topic; this time limit does not always allow for nice, wrapped-up endings...I apologize now for the abrupt one here.

Write about your name...

My mom is an opera singer. She has the most beautiful soprano voice...her favorite singer is Risë Stevens. Now, Rise Stevens spells her name R-I-S-E with an accent mark over the E. Apparently, my mom found that to be much too pretentious, so she changed the spelling to HER liking ~ R-I-S-S-A. 

I never game my name much thought, really...until I got a new bike in the 5th grade. Every kid in the neighborhood got bikes that Christmas. Susan Gilbert got a new bike. Mary Roberts got a new bike. Sara Palmer got a new bike. Kevin, Brian & Jimmy Hill, Lisa & Ricky Jones, Larry & Tammy Castleman all got new bikes. They all got new bikes with blue & yellow license plates bearing their names. Yep. Every last one of them had their names on a license plate. When I asked my parents for a license plate with *my* name, Mom had to gently explain there wasn't one. I was having NONE of it. She had to be lying. Somewhere there had to be a shiny blue & yellow license plate with my name on it. There just *had* to be! That became my quest, my obsession - find a mug, a magnet, a keychain, a something with my name on it! 

For my birthday that year, Mom gave me personalize pencils ordered from the Lillian Vernon catalog. And thus began my Mom's 'signature' gift - personalized [fill-in the blank] ~ towels, bathrobes, blankets, gym bags, lunch bags, coffee cups, luggage, luggage tags, sweatshirts, t-shirts, backpacks, car mats, car seat covers, door mats, wine carafes, wine glasses, wine. Good grief! I've got my name on everything now.

Except a little blue and yellow license plate.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

47 in 47 - Why?

Why am I doing this? Good question.

I'm doing this for Teenage Me. 

Teenage Me had goals and dreams. She thought this age would look different, feel different. She thought this age would be different. Honestly, until recently, I held those thoughts and dreams, too. And because I didn't/couldn't make them come true, Adult Me failed her.

With '47 in 47' I'm going to show Teenage Me we didn't fail. We succeeded! And, we're okay.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

In less than 50 days...

In less than 50 days, I will be 47 years old. For the first time since entering my 40s, I am not caught in a downward spiral of depression. But, I teeter on the edge and fight not to fall. To keep me from falling, I've decided to celebrate ME with a "47 in 47" countdown - sharing stories, answering questions, posting stuff about me. The bragging and over-sharing starts Friday :)

Friday, March 07, 2014

Daily Haiku on Love

"Sometimes it saves you, sometimes it can set you free. Oh but it will hurt." - Tyler Knott

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Grief is not a Hole

"As we all know, grief is not a hole that gets filled in; it's a hole with a shoddy trap door on top. Mostly you can walk across it okay, but every so often, you fall in. Again." - Lisa R.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

All I Wanna Do

I snapped this pic somewhere between London and Los Angeles, I was restless, having trouble sleeping. I slid the window shade up and saw this. It was clear and bright - and I didn't even have my glasses on! There's so much out there to see, experience, live. And I'm going to find it.

Saturday, February 15, 2014


I've been mourning the loss of a friendship this week. I feel incredibly sad and truly feel the loss in my soul. 

Since the spring, communication slowed then ceased. I called, emailed, texted and all efforts were met with silence. I chalked it up to busy-ness, although in my heart of heart, I'm sure I knew our friendship was over. 

In the fall, I endured a very tragic, personal crisis. This was the first friend I called. Silence had never hurt so much. With all the pain, I had to compartmentalize and the friendship was tucked away. 

In recent months, I allowed my thoughts to wander to cutting ties. Out of anger, I stopped following on twitter and instagram. Petty, I know. Facebook was the last frontier, so to speak. To me, unfriending on FB is the ultimate 'eff you', the end all. While on FB last week, I discovered I'd been unfriended. Body blow! I cried behind the closed door of my office. I didn't think it was coming to THAT kind of end. Well, I hoped it wouldn't.

I've been mourning and questioning and wondering what the heck happened. I've been reading quotes on friendship. And, encountered a list of "things you should let go this year" posted on some site. One bullet point was 'toxic people.' 

Wait. Am I that friend's toxic person? Holy crap! That's hard to hear. I am someone else's toxic person, the person that adds no benefit to another's life, the person that brings another down. Wow. That's harsh. How does one deal with that?

Monday, January 06, 2014

Good news

@JoelOsteen: Good news: The right people are already in your future. It’s just a matter of time before they show up.