Things became too much this week.  I had grand ideas for my free week with the kids.  

Each day, we had a fun activity, usually free stuff I've found around the city.  In between these events, I had some jobs - music jobs and law jobs.  GIST cancer and its treatment has left me with physical pain and/or nausea every moment of every day, but it's become an afterthought.  A get-up, shut-up, be happy you're alive thought.  I figured I could do it all.  There was a giant crash and burn.  As one does, you get up, brush off, and do your best to see what went wrong and how to prevent that from happening again.  The only other option is to sit in your bed and cry.  I allow myself the time it takes to play through Tori Amos' "Silent all these years" approximately three times, and then my good cry must come to an end.  (Ultimate cry songs - I am an expert in these).

At a certain point, when the excitement of the diagnosis and the surgery and its aftermath dies down, when your support system understandably returns to their own lives, you are left just as you were before:  the same person with the same responsibilities, just with an added physical blow to your system.  Maybe there is backed up work - people took time off to be with you and now have to work double.  The stress these things put upon your family unit is intense.  Sometimes you don't even realize how much the bow is bending until it breaks.  And I have a pretty solid family unit.  But there are days that are too much, where I can see that just as I felt the toll of this past year - so does my family.  I feel responsible.  The dangerous thought pattern of "why me? Why meeee?" threatens to knock you off your game.

You want to ride high for the rest of your second-chance life, that you are LUCKY and BLESSED to be alive.  Yes, yes, and yes.  I feel that at my core.  But you can't sustain yourself on the fumes of positivity when the reality still stands that there are some fundamental changes that occurred, very quickly, very unexpectedly.

Sometimes I think I have not even addressed them. 

All of my close friends and family know how I feel, what I look like on the days I've got Tori on repeat.  What a joy I am to be around.  But I put out a pretty good public front: I'm a rock star, don't you forget it.

I guess I want you to know, I'm not.  Just a person trying to spin it all as best as I can.  That IS pretty metal, true.  But I don't do it all.  Not even close.

Love and hugs to anyone who is rocking their best through life right now.  



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Sooo... here we are, summer's last hurrah.  I am seeing all of the cute first day of school photos hitting my various social media feeds - everyone with fresh backpacks and cute, colorful outfits that have not yet met the art room or the sand table.  We start school after Labor Day, and my kids wear uniforms, so I don't have to think too hard about filling their wardrobes each year.

However, I always get each kid a special outfit when school starts.  Maybe it is for a violin recital or a weekend birthday party (I am convinced that all my kids' friends' birthdays are in the fall).  In any event, new clothes are fun!

When it comes to that special new outfit for a concert or a party, Tea Collection has always been a favorite.  I like the international inspiration concept.  This fall's line of inspiration makes me extra excited:  Bavaria!  How can I not love the Bavaria line?!  (Go ahead, ask me why... you know I'll tell you anyway;)  My mom is from Germany.  Her mom was a clothing designer, having come from a long line of artists, and studied in Paris.  My grandma, who is nearing 90 and has survived a multitude of life tragedies and health problems, still sends handmade items to my kids each year.  Now, that is chutzpah!

So, Bavaria.  The land of forests and fairy tales!  I can just see my grandma's charming illustrations in this line... this little hooded red cape especially.  I like the bold, clean look of the Bavarian collection's bright primary colors.  As with all of the Tea pieces, these ones are easy to match and interchange.


Right now, enjoy 10% off new styles, by clicking the link on my page.  As always, free shipping on orders over $150.

Danke schön!



There is a convergence of deep thoughts occurring within me right now.  Internet, I deliver them to you thusly:

1.  Plenty of words have been written about raising toddlers.  Everyone has a trick or a method that they swear is the end all, be all.  Today I had an epiphany that was so obvious, it borders on insulting, but here you go:  toddlers (and really, people of all ages) simply need all of your time, your full attention, your eyeballs on their person every second of the day, your A game, and then some on top of that.  When and if you can deliver the aforementioned, you will be handsomely rewarded with good behavior.  After a few exasperating days of parental fail earlier this week, I decided to scrap all of my well-researched methods, and start back at square one.  Forget everything I've read, and just do something my mom would do.  Get on the floor, look him in the eyes.  Engage him, as opposed to entertain him.  Sometimes I have such high expectations for myself that I lose sight of the forest for the trees.  For instance, I schedule these intricately planned days of adventure, when all he really wants to do is hang out and push his matchbox cars up and down my leg as if I were a living hilly race track.  And so, I am a race track.    

2.  The new Taylor Swift song is, like all Taylor Swift songs, blessed/cursed with such a catchy hook, that no matter how many times you have heard her isolated vocals, you can't stop yourself from singing it.  Always at odd times, too, like when you are stepping up to the bench to argue a motion and the only words that want to exit your mouth are, "Players gonna play play play play play play ..."  I am not knocking Taylor Swift.  There is a place for Taylor Swift in this world, and I am glad she is in it.  But, speaking strictly as a musician, I have these irrational moments when, as my son pushes matchbox cars up the race track that is my leg, I ask, how come she is the darling of pop and not me.  I know, right?!  Oh, and don't even tell me it is because she has the exquisite form of a gazelle and the face of an angel.  Sigh.  T. Swift.  Why must you write such catchy, catchy tunes?!

I told you these were deep thoughts.  Onward...

3.  I have finally discovered that using base coat and top coat on a manicure is a beneficial practice.  You probably knew this already.  You, with your shiny manicure that neither chips nor yellows your fingernails.  But I was not so advanced until today.  Unless I had someone else do it for me, I sought instant nail color gratification and just slapped on any old color of my choice.  No base, no top.  "Why can't I ever make my nails look like a professional manicure?" I thought, whilst unfairly blaming my left hand for a shoddy paint job.  Well, I take it all back.  Base coats and top coats are TOTALLY WORTH IT.  You should see how shiny my "devil's advocate" colored nails are right now.  And clicky.  Very clicky on the keys.

4.  Today also marked the first time that I saw a real live human being wearing one of those gold temporary tattoos in public.  Do you know the ones?  I have seen them floating around Pinterest for awhile now, usually accompanied by amazing midi rings and flowy kaftans.  I saw a woman wearing a gold geometric pattern on her wrist today, and, because I am inexplicably entranced by sparkly things, I almost went to the nearest OfficeMax, got a metallic sharpie, and made one of my own.  But no one wants a lawyer approaching the bench who is singing Taylor Swift and wearing a homemade gold temporary tattoo.      

5.  Finally, please enjoy some unrelated photos I took today, of the little things you must get down on your hands and knees to see, but are infinitely rewarding if you take the time to stop and look.