Allowing Myself

…to feel, to love, to be.

Tag: iphoneography

Pop Culture Much?

Well – hello again.

Technically, work’s been super quiet, and I’m taking advantage. BUT I’m really just stock-piling reserves for the craziness that is the end of January string of events. Not to mention most of 2014 being blocked out already. Found out a venue we usually use is booked (FML) so I’m searching for a new option. There’s a bit more drama there, but it’s a total waste of energy to bring it into this space.

I am loving my new iPhone because of the PicTapGo app (see photo above for example). The “lights on” filter basically gives you the look of more light on any photo, plus it tracks the filters you use most frequently. Like, I have a style. Go figure.

And speaking of style – check out this hotness: 5 Days of Dresses by Hell of High Fashion. Jess is the gal who styled me back in February (happy bday to myself) and I’ve been in love with my closet ever since. Gotta do a post soon on the new outfits I purchased a few weeks ago. All I am gonna say is YAY NAVY.

Been talk talk talking about ideas for this little space, my own career and magic in general… conversations with friends, colleagues and lots of cool people. Like the few coffee meetings with Max of Shmedia Media who wrote out a little plan-of-action for me to make on move. First of which involves getting a Pinterest account. Because I need another internet rabbit hole to dive down… but when a guy who knows social media say “You are the reason Pinterest exist” one shuts her mouth and creates an account. More TBD.

We’re almost done with Orange Is The New Black. It’s awesome. Go watch it. The End.

I finally connected my love of Chris Hardwick to the downloading of The Nerdist podcast and my head basically exploded. This podcast is the epitome of everything I care about: art, creating, pulling the curtain back, interviews, real conversations and pop culture (minus deep nerd culture).

Blasting music by Haim and Lucius‘ new record Wildewoman.

And I’m reading The Book Thief and going to see Catching Fire tomorrow with my sister – so if anyone ever says I’m not into pop-culture enough, please remind me to send them this post.

happy weekending.






I received a new iPhone 5s and it’s fabulous. Especially the camera + apps. The latte pic above was taken with PicTapGo. Highly recommend.

We had a festive evening with some friends, carving pumpkins and drinking spiked cider. Love me some honey Jack. I went with the graphic and simple Pumpkin Pi (get it?! I am married to a math teacher). Unfortunately, the thing bloomed into a mess of mold after 4 days.

I cleaned (almost) the entire apartment by myself before my parents came to visit – with disc 1 of this DMB concert at Central Park blaring through the TV. I’ve avoided DMB for ~11years now due to major falling-outs around the time I cared about them. Music, and love, will do that to you.

The table cloth I purchased after Christmas last year made it’s debut, complete with tiny pumpkins. It’s finally feeling like Fall here.

My parents visited – which included a Jason Aldean concert, taking professional family portraits on the beach, eating more bread in 4 days than I eat in a normal month, a walk through Abbott Kinney and a visit to The Getty.

I applied for, and was able to process, my passport paperwork. Looking at that puppy arriving in the mail in T-6 weeks.

Now, where should we go?

Welcoming June 2013

Checking In

This photo is from a year ago today. This afternoon I sat at the same desk, sipping a different beverage, doing the work I do to pay the bills. I found this picture while going through my 2012 photos, reviewing my year for Chookooloonks’ Create.2013.

But instead of doing the assigned prompts, I am here, with you. I’m writing out of frustrated with the e-course. We’re supposed to go back through 2012 for all of the good, and then our lives for all of the awesome. This should be fun, life-affirming work, but the tasks seem totally overwhelming. And besides, I already did a review of 2012 in November and December. I’m over reviewing 2012 – I’m ready to get started, and riding high on the energy of a new year.

That’s what I thought this class was, dreaming, looking forward, and journaling to deepen my experience in the world. So far it feels cerebral and a lot like homework.

But I’m not writing because the class sucks. In fact, I’m sure it’s totally fine and working for most people enrolled. What I want to write about is how I feel like, since this isn’t working for me, then I must be sucking. And that I should try harder. Or make myself do it. Or care more. Or any other “should” that comes to mind. I panic that I signed up for the wrong class at the wrong time, or that I’m doing it wrong, or that I’ve wasted my money. And I feel stupid – like there is some trick I’m missing or some piece of information I lack before I can settle in and do this.

This shit is coming up from an e-course I signed up for for fun. And if it’s coming up here, then when else do these gremlins rear their ugly heads? What else am I fighting against each day? How is it that something so simple can turn me against myself?

Luckily, I’m aware of this creeping in, so I’m going to leave it alone for the night. I know nothing’s wrong with me. I know I’ve signed up and it’s the perfectly right time, even if it means the lessons sit in my email until I feel ready to do them. A good night’s sleep and some cuddles will help. And I’ll be sure to check back with an update re: the class itself and my own issues. Until then… xo


Cuteness x10

I can not even explain his cuteness.

Bridal Shower

Saturday was my bridal shower. My mom and sister threw the party for me at my parents’ home. I was able to travel down from Boston after work on Friday. My freshman roommate made the trip with me – we trained it to Bridgeport, CT and then ran to the ferry. Crazy enough, we ran into my cousin and her two kids (my flower girls) on the ferry.


The themed colors were pink and green – very spring and Easter. Pink is usually not my thing, but it was beautiful.


Favors were little candles with seashells on them. We ate delish sandwiches, veggies, cream puffs with cream cheese filling, and the most amazing chocolate cake I’ve ever had (thanks to my sister).


There was a game or two, but mostly I opened gifts and chatted with people. It was amazing to see all of these awesome women who love and support me and my fiance. We’re so blessed.


There were a ton of gifts – well beyond what I expected at all. It’s kind of overwhelming. I can network and enjoy public speaking, but being the center of attention in this way is uncomfortable for me. Luckily, I had my former roommate to my right for emotional support (I kept asking her, “How am I doing?” when opening my gifts. “You’re good, JTo,” she’d say.) Then on my left was my sister, taking notes and getting me more water or wine. And next to her was my future sister-in-law moving the gifts along and keeping it all low drama for me.

Overall, an awesome weekend party. I am so loved.


This Grateful Season – Nature



**For the month of November, I’m posting something each day that I’m grateful for. It may be as long as an intricate post, as short as a quote, as simple as a link or as wordless as a photograph. A friend has come on board. Join us?

This Grateful Season – Latte Art

I’ve missed a day due to WordPress accidentally shutting down my blog for a night and then having last night’s happy hour turn into a long night of drinks with friends. My intention is to post each day, which I’m *loving*. Calling the missed day “practice” working through my perfectionism tendencies. Crazily enough, I have so much I want to blog about, it’s not a content issue, but a time. Life’s gotta be lived first 🙂

So delighted with the pleasant surprise of (3) different images in lattes this week. So gorgeous and fun.

Espresso Profeta – large decaf latte



Urth Cafe – large honey vanilla latte


Urth Cafe – large latte (for my friend Mike)

~ ~ ~

**For the month of November, I’m posting something each day that I’m grateful for. It may be as long as an intricate post, as short as a quote, as simple as a link or as wordless as a photograph. A friend has come on board. Join us? #gratefulseason

Jimmy Eat World – Bleed American 10x

This week we saw Jimmy Eat World do a 10th Anniversary show of “Bleed American” the record that made them uber-famous.

It was also the record that my fiance and I bonded over when we first met, 9 years ago at college. A lot of these songs mean more to me than I could ever explain but I thought I’d share some of the photos I took with lyrics that make my heart twinge.

Jim Adkins is, hands down, my biggest celebratory crush. I was never obsessed with boy bands or actors, but the music this bands plays, the lyrics they write, and Jim’s voice all make me swoon. It’s the only band that makes me feel like a hormone-driven, emotionally messy teenager… and I love it.

I’ve seen them four times total, all in LA. This was absolutely the best show of all. Jim Adkins was fuckin’ on – he was a skinny, singing, sweating ball of energy and I wanted nothing more than him. :::sigh:::

“If you still care at all. Don’t go, tell me now. If you still love me at all… don’t call”

“I’m finding out, cheating gets it faster…”

“I wanna always feel like part of this was mine.
I wanna fall in love tonight…”

“So here we are now, a sip of wine a sip of water.
Someday, maybe. Maybe someday we’ll be smarter.
And I’m sorry that I’m such a mess, I drank all my money could get.
And took everything you let me have and then I never loved you back.

If you don’t don’t know, why’d you say so?
Would you mean this, please, if it happens?
If you don’t know, why would you say so?
Won’t you get your story straight.
If you don’t, then honey why’d you just say so, cuz I need this now, yeah need this, need this.
If you don’t, then honey then you don’t know.”


For 15 weeks straight, I’ve written morning pages.

For 11 weeks I’ve follow the Artist’s Way.

For 10 weeks I’ve been without therapy.

Each morning, whether my eyes drift lazily or snap open, I wake up. Sounds swirl – car horns, the dog stretching, showers running, and microwaves chirping. I stretch out my legs and then turn over, curling up on the side that I neglect because I share a bed. Like Byron Katie suggests, I try not to think too much about being in bed or, more importantly, how I “need” to get up. I’ll get up when I sit up, and I usually do, right on time.

My journal rests in a corner of the headboard. Maybe I use the bathroom before I begin. I smooth the sheets out and pile pillows behind my back. The dog stares at me most mornings with excitement, he’s ready for breakfast, but I leave him in his crate, asking him to “Rest your head & be quiet. Good boy”.

This was an important shift that had to happen before I could really give 100% to my morning pages. They needed to happen FIRST. Before anything else, besides maybe a quick pee / hand wash / sip of water, I need to start writing. No dog walks, no breakfast, and certainly no stupid technology. I leave my phone OFF. I have the luxury of usually being home alone, but if not, I don’t speak unless spoken to.

This is my morning ritual. This is how I greet the day. With therapy on hiatus, I am dependent on this 40min segment to hold my worries, rearrange my fears, give me perspective and light my hope.

“We have this idea that we need to be in the mood to write (create). We don’t.” AW

More importantly, we think that sitting still, doing a small action, and meditating are things that, on one hand we can somehow do “incorrectly” and yet, on the other, are “pointless” (aka I have “better” things to do with my time).

My MPs are neither pointless nor perfect. I do just what they say – I write 3 pages, long hand. And then I start my day.

It’s my practice. It’s not something I fret over or improve, not something I judge or critique. It’s just something I do that somehow allows me to feel heard. I write down my dreams, my complaints, my moods. It’s suggested that it could be seen as prayer or meditation. At first I found this too “woo-woo” for my liking, but now I really do feel it’s something deeper than just blurting thoughts onto a page, even though that’s exactly what I’m doing.

Just in the way yoga is more than holding down-dog for 5 breaths, morning pages are an asana for my mind and my spirit. And I’m not entirely sure how to explain it yet, but I think it’s opening up a space for me and God.