mixtapes were a right and proper form of communication when i was a teenager and i find their nostalgia and sentiment still ring true today. a good mix can say so much. inspired by jessica hope tran and her monthly mixes over at seastation, here’s my first try at one via 8tracks. i hope you enjoy it too.
- my life is messy right now
- i have kids
- i love to travel
- i grew up in Florida
- i want to be at the beach for always
sometimes i have to break things down for myself and regardless of how scary or hopeless the big picture seems in the moment, i try to make a little picture that i can enjoy. one foot in front of the other. one day at a time. with that said, a month ago i took m’self a road trip.
i decided to post this trip (and a couple more trips i have taken) for a couple reasons:
1. i hope to encourage anyone that even when you’re in the middle of a category 5 tropical shit storm, you can still make strides to do things that make your heart happy. it won’t change all or any of your circumstances, no…..but for me, having a smile on my face for a week was a place to start.
2. i hope to inspire Mom’s (especially) to take more risks with their kids and then be surprised at how resilient and flexible all of you really can be. i drove my 3 1/2 year old and my almost 2 year old from Charlotte to Jacksonville, to Orlando, to West Palm Beach and back – by myself. i’m not trying to toot my own horn…..i’m just bearing witness that you can do it too. you’re not trapped and you don’t have to sit in your yoga pants all day and watch Curious George and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse for the next 5 years. just make a plan. save some money and dig deep for your adventurous spirit – it’s still in there!!! was it tough? yeah i have kids remember? but we made a lot of great memories, saw some old friends, made some new friends and drank up the sun and sand like there was no tomorrow. i also got closer to my kids. which is always a plus.
now here’s a ridiculous amount of pictures from my iphone (sorry for the grain)…..
first stop Jax Beach
we stayed with one of my childhood best friend’s: Kaci and her husband Daniel. Noah and Sparrow hit it off with their kids Elijah and Ryland. It was delicious toddler mahem.
i am so sad i didn’t get a picture of Kaci and i together. she and i have been friends since we were 7.
above photo is so cute i just want to throw up
saw this incredible Florida sunset driving from Jax to Oviedo – our next stop.
new pup at The Dorn’s and Noah’s little bed on the floor
spent a few hours with dear friends Amy & Lisa and their brood of children
spent that evening with besties: Matt & Jennifer Fox and my very own Stephan Monteserin at Redlight Redlight!
i look so tired, because i am so tired. kids don’t care how late you stay up. they want warm oatmeal and tickle sessions at 7:45am.
Jenn & i have been friends since we were in 6th grade.
stay tuned for part II! Florida at it’s finest: sea turtles, jacuzzi beds, art shows and a flat tire.
so besides writing and raising my wigwam-heads, i also find great enjoyment in creative projects. here are my latest endeavors…
i have an etsy shop called the lost and found, and recently opened it back up again with some fresh handmade cards! i always make my own cards to give friends and family for Birthday’s, baby showers, or just because and everyone always says i should make them in bulk and sell them. so, “everyone”….thanks for your encouragement, let’s hope you’re right and that people will buy them!
these cards are made from vintage children’s books that i have been collecting for several years. i cut unique pictures from the books and sew them onto colorful postcards then match the colors with some bright envelopes. you know me….i love color!
each card is 100% unique and original. and some of the cards i have hand-drawn added touches to make them even more genuine.
You can purchase these sweet little card sets here: the lost and found shop
i am always open to make custom orders. i can print initials or specific words on card sets, just let me know. check back often because i am cranking these out. i literally have like an entire bookshelf of vintage children’s books to cut up. just leave me a message here, on etsy, or here email@example.com
this is the other project i just completed….
so, as you can see….i bought an old entertainment center and repurposed it into a kid’s kitchen! the embarrassing part is that this was intended to be a Christmas present. doh! so yeah – it took me 4 months to finish it, but i think it turned out pretty great!
i had to use a lot of primer and a lot of paint – which were the most expensive things actually, but everything else is used! the sink is just an old aluminum mixing bowl. the facet is new, but was only $12 at The Home Depot.
i painted both magnetic & chalkboard paint onto the fridge door to make it more versatile. and as you can see, the fridge is mostly used for storage. my son has a bit of a car obsession that requires several bins for his collection.
i feel accomplished and my kids love it, so pat pat pat on my back!
here’s a little sneak peak at my current project……
i’ll be opening a shop of some of my thrifted treasures soon….stay tuned!
jessie (& Sparrow)
she helped me with the post this morning. don’t judge us, we’re still in our jammies.
and speaking of influence…..
- John Angell James
i’m starting with the man in the mirror
spring fever, that is.
this 77 degree weather on the first of March ministers to my soul and stirs up this Florida girl’s blood. today i am inspired by these snapshots of sunny day adventures.
may this gorgeous spring weather cure your fever today too.
the three hens had breakfast at the three hens – DURR
the restaurant was located in an area called “Curry Hill”. literally three hens was like the only place for blocks that wasn’t Indian cuisine. The spices were rich in the air; as were the colors.
“make it work, designers”
in another life i’d love to go to fashion school just to learn how to make awesome clothes.
i would have bought all of these expect that they were $5 each. dumb.
i don’t tie my shoes anymore
as you can see the sun was out and the colors of the flea market (and this hottie) were pure brilliance!
we stopped into Freight + Volume Gallery in Chelsea to see one of my very best friends Iris, who resides in the Big Apple. isn’t she a doll?
Iris recommended we walk on the high line since it was such a nice day out. so we did and it was cool.
when yellow-jacketed Kara walked by this cobalt blue wall i squealed with color glee and made her model for me. it was fun i think.
we got super hungry after the high line and followed a crowd into The Chelsea Market – where we were met with lots of delicious foods & cupcake shops!
fresh meat market
yeah – that just happened
crazy subway hussy’s
after a little rest back at our loft, we headed back out for dinner. we kinda lost track of time and didn’t end up eating until like 9:30, but sweet holy baby Jesus – was it GOOD! no, that’s an understatement. i had a moment with the food at Eataly, like i’ve never had in my life. if i tried to explain how much i enjoyed it, it would sound inappropriate. so….
Eataly is like a mall of Italian food. There was pretty much anything Italian you could ever want. I loved the look of all these candies. And Absinth candy?!? I would’ve bought some but by the time we finished dinner the stores were closed.
like true Italians – eating dinner at 10:30pm
these were all over the N R trains. a one nite stand at the zoo? sounds cool.
they’re not interested.
saw some sick b-boys
i fell in LOVE with All Saints and decided if i had a ton of money, i’d buy everything they were selling.
time to say goodbye.
loved the trip. wish it was longer, and i barely feel like i got to do anything. but such is life. i’m happy to be home with my babies. Noah was a wreck while i was gone.
last year i turned 30 and decided that for my own sanity and to appease my insatiable wanderlust, i would take a trip with friends once a year, every year of my 30′s. last year we went to San Francisco. this year: New York City.
before i inundate you with an ungodly amount of pictures, i will share with you some stuff about stuff that struck me while i was a visitor to the Big Apple.
- Everyone’s Beautiful – no matter where i go in the world, i feel like the people i encounter are somehow familiar. and in a city as large as New York, with all the thousands of combinations of eyes, noses and mouths that pass by thousands of other facial combinations every day, i still managed to see familiarity in every single one (except maybe some of the Europeans). amidst the pushy people-herding of such a throbbing city, i was overwhelmed with this thought: “everyone’s beautiful”. and although most were encompassed in their own bubble of self-protection and unapproachability, i saw through it and recognized their eyes, their noses, their mouths and saw my brothers and my sisters. because at the end of the day we all are one; in need of love. and we all are beautiful, because that’s how we were made; in the image of love Himself.
- The cold makes me cuss – this really requires no explanation, except that my body type was not created for extreme cold. i appreciate seasons and change and even a little tiny bit of winter weather, but seriously….my body type was meant to thrive in like the Virgin Islands, or something. c’mon. 30 degree weather? F@*& NO!
- Relax? - is it possible for New Yorkers to relax? i mean i guess you can go to Central Park and chill out, but it just seemed like everywhere we went everyone was super busy and in a hurry and go go go. i just don’t know if i lived there if i could ever truly relax. maybe you get used to it? don’t get me wrong, i actually enjoy crowds and movement and hustle and bustle, but i wonder where you go in New York when you want to relax and step off of the daily conveyor belt for a little bit? the Virgin Islands, maybe?
- A lifetime – upon returning home everyone asks me “so, what did you do?”. my honest answer is “i have no idea”. we walked a ton, shopped, ate our faces off, walked some more, rested, drank too much coffee (just me) and then went shopping again. i decided that it would be an amazing project to interview someone in their 80′s who has spent their lifetime in New York City. even though i’ve only been there a handful of times, i believe that someone could spend a lifetime in the city and still never see everything there is to see.
here’s all i saw…
photo by Lorean
iphone addicts – everyone of us
so we made it to our loft and i made the funniest joke. (see above) i’m still giggling over it. it was fun to bunk it up again. felt like summer camp – but in New York. after we set up our bunks, we went out on foot for dinner & ate at a cozy, delicious Thai place. we stayed there for a few hours talking and planning, then spent the evening back in our bunks doing more talking. girls are SO good at talking OMG.
then we went to sleep. i got some flack from friends about going to bed “so early” (midnight) – but in my defense, before i boarded my plane i had spent my day at the doctor with my babies who had whopping ear & respiratory infections. so….you can all eat my butt. when a mother goes on vacation, good sleep is the equivalent of partying. oh dear….i am getting old.
Lorni at Kidrobot
photo by Lorean
Friday night one of the best things happened. i got to see one of my favorite bands Mates of State – in New York effing City! it was definitely a high point in my life. i’m not that indie girl with her hands in her pockets nodding her head at a show. i was full out dancing and singing every song. woke up the next morning hoarse. truth.
stay tuned for part 2: Hell’s kitchen flea market, the high line, Chelsea Market, bumps & blue walls, Eataly, Chinatown espionage, and Central Park b-boys.
- Watch some Movies: Now let me first say that most romantic movies are NOT realistic at all and any woman that thinks she’s going to land a guy like she sees in the movies is dreaming. BUT it doesn’t hurt to have some knowledge of what women drool over. You might be thinking “Well forget that, I will never in a million years look like Robert Pattinson, or Johnny Depp, or Ryan Gosling”….Ok ok, we know that, but what do they do to win their lady’s love on screen? It’s not all about looks, fellas. Women aren’t like men in the sense that men are 99% visually stimulated. Women are complex emotional black holes who love to be wooed and sought and romanced until our eyeballs roll back in our heads and we don’t even remember you have a rat ‘stache or a beer belly. But if you watch what the guys do in these movies to win the hot girl, you might could learn something. These are my all time favorite chic-flicks; the romance in them makes me gooey (and just for the record, I am NOT a gooey girl, I’m tough as nails and will kick your ass if you ever say different – but I seriously do love these movies OMG): The Notebook, 10 Things I Hate About You, Shakespeare in Love, Big Fish, Amelie, Elizabethtown, Dirty Dancing, Sweet Home Alabama, Serendipity, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Love Actually, P.S. I Love You, Ever After, City of Angels, Say Anything, and yes….I do like the Twilight saga (don’t judge me). Take notes while you watch, boys. i’m not kidding.
- Know Who You Are: As I know that men are drawn to confident women; women are also drawn to confident men. When you know who you are and you can be confident without being cocky, that is surely one of THE most attractive things in the world. Women want to know they’ll be taken care of, defended and protected – no matter what. If a guy is a wussy who doesn’t make eye contact and has a floppy handshake he probably doesn’t think highly of himself; just sayin’. And he probably isn’t going to be a good ally in a bar fight. Now some people just have more of an introverted personality, which is fine, but that isn’t what I’m talking about. You can be an introvert wall-flower who also knows when to speak up for himself, or defend the defenseless, or be “the man” and do the right thing – even when everyone else isn’t. I think women have eagle laser eyes for these guys – we see you. And these guys aren’t always the most attractive ones, either – which strangely enough somehow makes them magically more attractive. It’s the guy who can quiet a room with just his presence. The guy who goes and helps an elderly woman put her groceries in her car. The guy who opens the door for the mom with the double stroller. The guy who takes the drink away from the under-aged kid at a party. The guy who walks into a room of girls and asks if he can get anyone anything. The guy who gives up his seat for a lady: on a bus, at a bar, in a friend’s living room. The guy who’s not afraid to call someone out who is being inappropriate. You don’t necessarily have to look and act like a badass, just know and believe you’re one. So when the time comes for you to present your badassness, it’s there. Be confident but not cocky; it’s hot.
- Compliment Her: There’s a difference between a compliment and a pick-up line so please note the difference before choosing your ammo (it’s all about your motive actually. Are you saying something sweet to hook up, or just to make her smile? motive. ) When approaching a nice lady, take notice of how she looks, what she’s wearing, her hair, whatever and give her a compliment. If it’s forced she’ll def notice and may even call you out on it. (i have a tendency to do this). Recently a friend told me he can always ask a girl “Did you do something different with your hair?”, and then no matter what her response is he’ll reply with “Well it really looks great!”. He tested it on me before I knew it was a test and I was flattered. Especially since I had just finished working out and my hair was all sweaty and mussy. So there’s one you can try out for yourself. The key though is to be GENUINE. If you find nothing you want to compliment on her looks, then take note of what she talks about. PAY ATTENTION! Be engaged in what she’s saying. Girls drop subtle hints ALL THE TIME! What they love or hate, things they wish they could do, places they wish someone would take them to. *hint hint hint* Don’t miss something she’s hinting for you to do because you can’t get your brain’s hands off her breasts. Focus with your ears, guys. We see those sneaky glances to the chestal region. It’s ok…..i know it’s human nature, but just try and focus on conversation. Compliments, compliments!
- Don’t Facebook stalk a girl but never talk to her in person. – creeper-
- Don’t follow a girl through the grocery store just staring at her while she shops. She can see you following her, and she’s ignoring you on purpose.
- Don’t talk to all her friends and ask if she likes you. Are you in 5th grade? Grow a pair and talk to her yourself, dummy.
- Don’t ever drag God into your reasons why you should or shouldn’t date/marry a girl. It never turns out right. NEVER
- Don’t wear too much cologne. It’s nauseating.
- Don’t be a close talker.
- Don’t name-drop or brag about cool or important things you’ve done (unless she asks).
- Don’t talk about yourself all the time. Ask her questions. Observe and Initiate.
- Don’t mess with your junk in the presence of ladies. This isn’t a baseball diamond. (I have been known to ask a guy that is digging in his crotch if he’d like a shovel.)
- Don’t spend all your time on your cell phone. It’s super rude and annoying. Live in the present with breathing humans with warm blood and blinking eyes. Life is so effing short – don’t miss out on relationships in real life because you chose your phone over a real conversation. It is the antithesis of an anti-social socialite. (i hate it, can you tell?)
- Don’t talk about how hot other girls are in front of another girl. Girls already compare themselves enough as it is. Don’t make it worse.
- Don’t play games! If you like a girl, just be real and up front. On the flip side, if you’re not feeling it, do NOT lead her on.
- Don’t let her pay for dinner, open her own door, etc. Contrary to what men might think, us ladies really do prefer a gentleman. (see classic book recommendation from part one if you need some help with chivalry).
- Don’t be schmarmy and sarcastic all the time – sarcasm is typically used to make yourself feel better by putting others down. -oh snap- People who hide behind sarcasm all the time are usually quite insecure themselves, so….is it worth hurting someone’s feelings just to get a laugh? think about it.
- Don’t talk to girls when you’re completely trashed.
- Don’t smack your food while you eat. it’s gross.
- Actually, just don’t be gross in general. Some girls can handle a little bit of gross, but I do know several girls who believe that all farting should be done in private. so…
- Don’t assume she’s uninterested. Sometimes a girl is waiting for you to make the first move; you are the guy afterall.
- Don’t be rude to your Mom. Call her, love on her, be kind to her. It is a direct indication of how you probably treat most women.
- Don’t perpetuate bad habits. Break the cycle. Be the change.