Archive for the ‘Joy’ Category

I AM THE DJ (Series – 11)
November 20, 2015

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The whole high school search has me in knots these past couple of weeks so I really want to try to go into the weekend and Thanksgiving holiday week feeling a little lighter in spirit. Music does it for me. It always helps my mood and truly has the ability to lift my heart and to get my body revved. Cole shares this synchronicity with music. He loves it and it can make or break a drive. He’s very ready for holiday music, which if you recall, I desperately try to enforce the “not until after Thanksgiving policy” upon him We’ve had a couple of outings already where nothing would satisfy but holiday music, and I’m thankful that the Bad Religion holiday album exists because to him it’s holiday music, and to me, well, it’s Bad Religion…(who by the way I grew up with…same junior and senior high school..).

I haven’t posted a playlist in a while but I’ve got one ready to play for the boy tomorrow when we are out and about doing some pre-Thanksgiving shopping and prep:

  1. CAGE THE ELEPHANT – Mess Around
  2. TONES ON TAIL – Go!
  3. ALEJANDRO ESCOVEDO – I Wanna Be Your Dog (Cover)
  4. BELLE & SEBASTIAN – I Want the World
  5. MARCHING CHURCH – Hungry for Love
  6. ALESSIA CARA – Here
  7. The FRAY – Heartbeat
  8. BRICK & MORTAR – Train
  9. ECHOSMITH – Cool Kids
  10. KING CURTIS – Soul Serenade
  11. KAYA STEWART – In Love With A Boy
  12. ADELE – Lovesong
  13. JEAN-MICHEL BERNARD – Generique Stephane
  14. DEVO – The Girl U Want
  15. THE PRETENDERS – Kid

 

ALL TOGETHER NOW
November 11, 2015

We’re homebound for the holidays. We will spend Thanksgiving with friends, and then look forward to our traditional Christmas Eve with the family, close and extended, at my brother’s house, and likely New Years Eve with friends. We’ll probably sneak in a Hanukkah latke fest or two as well!

This will be our second Thanksgiving spent with dear friends, and their extended family and friends, a warm, welcoming group of lovely people, and kids who welcome Cole into their fold of games and fun. It’s a relaxing evening, full of interesting conversation, laughter, and really great food and wine.   I’m already checking out recipes. I love any opportunity to cook for lots of people.

Traditionally I do a latke night in honor of Hanukkah one of the eight days (my husband is a non-practicing Jew). We’ve had friends and/or family over, and we’ve done it with just the three of us. I love making latkes and it’s our annual excuse to over indulge in their glory. Some years we’ve lit the candles in the Menorah each night, and others we’ve foregone this lovely tradition.

Christmas Eve is Cole’s favorite night of the year (we all love it but no one more than he). He loves the traditions that my brother and his family have cultivated over the past fourteen years. The evening rarely deviates from the routine, which is one of the reasons Cole loves it so much. It works with his sensibilities. It sort of takes on a movie like quality as we move from warm chatter, festive cocktails and nibbles, to a traditional roast beef dinner, complete with Yorkshire pudding, to all donning wacky Christmas hats to sing “The Twelve Days of Christmas”, to Santa dropping by for some fun with the kids, the holiday trivia challenge which leads to the White Elephant gift stealing game, and finally coffee and sweets. We leave happy, exhausted, and already looking forward to the next year.

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For the past few years we’ve done New Years Eve with friends. One family has generously supplied the house, I try to do a lot of the cooking, and we fill it out with delights from others. The evening involves lots of yummy cheese and wine and champagne, and more great conversation, laughter, and cheer. The kids do their own thing in the den, starting out with a movie, and moving to watching the ball drop on one of the network shows. It’s a perfect way to end and start years – sharing time with people we love.

This year, my in-laws will be with us at the end of the year. They’ll be here for a couple of days prior to Christmas, and then back again just after through the New Year. We’ll likely host a couple of small get-togethers for them. They have some friends here in LA, and also to give our LA based family a chance to visit with them as well. I’m looking forward to seeing them, and especially for Cole to have some time with them. They live in Hawaii and it’s not that easy, or affordable, for us to travel there often, so I feel like it’s important to make the visit special.

In the scope of all of this, I also want to try to host a couple of casual, almost open house type get-togethers. I feel like the holidays are a perfect excuse to open up your home and invite friends from different walks of your life to come share some cookies, or wine, or dinner. I’m feeling the need to connect with people I love. Maybe it’s a response to the somewhat isolated summer we had. I’ve been wanting people around and to be around people.

Perhaps also there’s a part of me that knows some of these traditions will likely change next year. Cole and his friends will likely all attend different high schools, my eldest niece will be in her first year of college, who knows where, and lives will have moved on. It’s all part of our natural evolution but it makes me want to wrap my arms around everyone and hold them close, never letting go.

Damn, I’m getting really sentimental as I age!

LOVE AND HAPPINESS
November 9, 2015

I attended a party this past Friday that is hosted by a couple of companies that I do work with.  I didn’t really know that many people in attendance, which is partially why I actually dragged myself to the event in the first place.  More often than not, I can be shy and I have hard time motivating to be bubbly and open.  Not always, and funnily, those who know me might find that a bit surprising.

In any case, I went and I spent a couple of hours enjoying the Santa Monica Pier after dark with nothing but lawyers and bankers, meeting people I’ve been talking to on the phone or communicating with vie email for years.  It was pleasant and really nice to have faces to the names now.  I had lots of enjoyable conversations and feel like it was definitely the right decision to attend.

I had one conversation with someone I consider a friend.  I’ve known him for many many years, though I only see him once or twice a year.  We are Facebook friends so we keep abreast of the shared events in our lives through that, which is really one of the things I most enjoy about Facebook.

One thing he shared with me is that he truly enjoys following my Facebook posts because he believes that they bring joy to people.  I hadn’t really consider that and don’t know that I’d describe myself or my posts as such but I was really touched that it was what he takes away from my shares.  It got me thinking about the interpretation and intention.

i suppose in many ways I do try to find the joy in things, even in dark situations like Cole’s surgery and recovery.  Somewhere in the love and care there are such moments of glee and joy that perhaps that is my intention in the way I share things.  It’s the way I try to live my life as well.  It’s not perfect, and it’s never going to be perfect but that doesn’t mean that there’s not infinite possibilities for happiness and joy – for hope.

I also tend to feel like even though we struggle, and have tough times, and life’s not always easy for us, or for Cole, there are so many people in this world, in my community, who have it worse.  Much as I enjoy a good bitch fest and the occasionally wailing and moaning about something, I never take it that seriously because I do always believe that it will all work out in the end.  I have hope.  I have joy.  I have love.