Feel Good 5 Friday … On a Saturday

21 Nov

I missed my Wednesday calling … my Words on Wednesday. Twice. Not that anyone is counting really. Feel like I’m performing a one-woman show in a giant theater to an audience of five, but at least it’s an awesome five who bring good vibes and thoughtful conversation.

It’s weariness. I think that’s what’s biting me in ass on Wednesday nights. I need another trip to the CVS vitamin aisle to get some Vitameatavegimin. I feel like the older I get the earlier I go to bed. What is that? I used to stay up until 1 or 2 on a consistent basis. I got parenthood wearing me down now and my silver fox look gaining some ground. With the change of life I haven’t been consistent. I have spurts. But I only have a month left to get a first draft together. I need to whip myself in writer shape. I used to stop by this lady’s spot a while back … 4 a.m. Writer.

Yup.

That’s exactly what it sounds like.

I don’t know if I can hang with that though, I’ve never been a rise and shiner. My entire life the crack of dawn hurts, unless I’m in the Australian Outback. I didn’t feel a thing when I traveled to Ayers Rock. First time in my life that I was excited for 4 a.m. in whatever time zone. I was up to watch the sunrise, freezing with a runny nose, but it was one of the best moments of my life. Funny how weariness hits me more when I’m at home.

But I think I made up for it with a surge of writing. Good music and morning pages. I got turned onto Morning Pages by Tim Ferriss and Brian Koppelman, but I found the source … Julia Cameron.

It’s supposed to help with my creative recovery during this Bill Murray Groundhog Day Adventure we’re all trying to survive. You know, all the procrastination and putting everything and everyone else before your project. Handwritten morning pages in a notebook every day are supposed to empty out the clutter in your mind and free up some space for creative efforts later on in the day, get in the habit of writing no matter what or how I feel. The morning routine of the pages starts the creative gears moving, that along with other Julia Cameron tips. But it took a while for it to kick in, at least for me. But I’m grateful to have been able to make progress.

And as I mentioned before progress means you’re going forward, and forward is a direction.

And along with this spike in activity I was able to hear some jams during some quick dance breaks that helped keep the vibes going. I hadn’t heard a couple of these in a while and they made it to my playlist this week and I was feeling better because of them. I especially enjoyed the funny.

I don’t usually hear Thanksgiving Day songs, Christmas is creeping and trying to take over the waves. But this tune right here … right here at the 4-minute mark from The Roots is my favorite Thanksgiving Song. Ever. In November this makes my day. I get my James Brown Janelle Monet dance moves and it just feels good. Dancing and funny feels good.

So I’m sending it and the rest of my Feel Good 5 Friday out to you …

Buen Camino my friends!

The Queen of Hearts –Juice Newton

Give Me That Side Dish … Stuffing in a Dead Bird — The Roots (starts at 4:00)

Blinded by The Light — Manfred Mann

El Chico Del Apartamento 512 — Selena

Life is a Highway — Rascal Flatts

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Feel Good 5 Friday

13 Nov

Sometimes you just run out of patience and it’s only Wednesday.

I mean I had nothing left in the tank and what made matters worse was the judgement. You know, when people who have no business judging you, go on and preach and you stand there thinking whaaaaaaaaaat? Mannnn, you’re not even in the arena how you gonna judge me. Some people shouldn’t even let out a whisper because the hypocrisy of their voice might just have lightning strike.

The judgement sucks especially when I’m already my harshest critic.

Writers. Artists, Athletes. Parents. People in general

We all have that extra sass in the back pocket just in case we didn’t feel bad enough about how the day was going, you got that zinger. That inner dialogue playing tricks on you when what you need is the strength of your inner superhero, sometimes he’s just stuck in the costume change.

You’re gonna need to wait a minute

So there were a lot of mixed feelings and emotional hangovers rolling over in the middle of the week. Got me thanking the universe for boxing and the sunshine on my back as I ran in the mornings. The pandemic minimizes the getaways, but a quick staycation would be good. Might have to plan another nature escape in order to recharge our batteries. Sometimes staring at your vision board isn’t enough, you got to make your own postcard. Even if it’s not pinned to the board, the trip will still be memorable and important for your sanity, because moving forward is a pace. Doesn’t have to be fast, just forward.

But until then, the eclectic bunch of feel good tunes got me bopping my head and feeling the beat, instead of focusing on the frustration of the moment. Releasing negative energy and breathing in something better, that’s Feel Good 5 Friday.

Buen Camino my friends!

Real World — Matchbox 20

Camisa Negra — Juanes

Keep Ya Head Up — 2 Pac

Some Nights — Fun

Born to be Alive — Patrick Hernandez

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Feel Good 5 Friday … On Sunday Morning Yeah … Sunday

8 Nov

Sometimes the finish line takes a couple extra steps.

The running is smooth. You feel your heartbeat, freedom, and peace. Your best leg. The swimming is hard but you enjoy it. The feel of the water on your skin as you glide passed the ripples. You feel your inner Michael Phelps. But it’s the biking, the hills. Even though you’ve trained the biking still kicks your ass that’s why you don’t like Peloton. You do strength, running, and yoga workouts only.

But you manage to climb while your legs are burning. You keep pedaling. You remember that you do in fact enjoy bike riding, but racing is different.

This week has been a triathlon.

It’s been an incredibly stressful for everyone in The States but it all came to an end last night, with a few more loose ends. But in all the finish line can be seen.

Finally.

The rainbow comes out after the rain and we were able to watch.

Literally.

The kids and I took a walk and there it was … suspended between the clouds. Taking deep breaths and feeling good. You know I always enjoy a walk or run after it rains. No one really around. It’s quiet. But the best part is the scent. The smell of clean air and fresh earth gives off the peaceful vibes and the rainbow was just extra sprinkles on top.

Been a rollercoaster of a week and the playlist for the week reflects that …

Buen Camino my friends.

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Stevie Wonder — Higher Ground

Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers — Waiting

Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats — S.O.B.

Los Hermanos Flores – La Bala

The Beatles — Here Comes the Sun

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Words on Wednesday …

4 Nov

It happens when things don’t necessarily go your way. You’re late, your friend didn’t come through, you ran out of time, it wasn’t there anymore. These are all reasons we do it.

The emergency gift.

There are multiple bottles of wine and gift cards that I’ve purchased for the emergency gift. As a parent with two kids, timelines don’t always go from A to B. I am dragged in all kinds of directions and trying to Zen my way to having more patience as we rush out the door. Emergency bottle of wine or gift cards saved me. Incidentally, everyone that has gotten these emergency bottles welcomed it with a smile.

But just recently I came across an emergency gift that was stored away. I had bought it last minute to add to a group gift because what my friend had special ordered was not going to arrive on time. At least, that’s what she told me. And it wasn’t until after I had already purchased this, that my friend called and said … I got it! It arrived.

So I kept the emergency present with the intention of regifting it sometime in the future to someone who might really enjoy it. An addition to a present that would add a nice little pick-me-up.

I forgot about it until recently when I went looking for a book and found it on the closet floor. I opened up this unfamiliar box and then smiled when I saw what was inside.

It IS official.

I laughed because I imagined that’s how the girl would react when she opened up the box of goodies and this was one of them.

I realized, I am TOTALLY worthy of this gift myself! I should keep it. There’s no re-gifting this, I mean, I want I can buy another one for someone else. But this one right here, this one is mine. It’s the kind of gift I’d enjoy by myself. Just drinking tea late at night or early in the morning when no one is awake. I’d feel weird if someone else other than the kids saw me drinking out of it. It’s more a private celebratory moment. A pat on the back. A loud woo-hoo whisper. A quiet cartwheel moment, if there is such a thing, to share with myself and take a deep breath.

Yeah. That’s definitely my cup.

It’s good to have reminders of things you shouldn’t forget, especially during Covid when you might not feel at 100 every day. Then I thought I should be buying myself emergency gifts once a month. I should have my own special bottle of wine, chocolate, treat, or reward for little accomplishments.

That helps keep the motivation up, and I definitely need to take advantage of the momentum when it’s rolling my way. Unexpected emergency gifts provide a silver lining to the never ending Groundhog Day we’re all living in right now. They might just give us that extra boost needed. We’d probably give Bill Murray a run for his money.

Buen Camino …

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Feel Good 5 Friday Plus One … On Halloween

31 Oct

Just a simple congratulations and a few words of encouragement. I like to keep things like that. Moments.

Sometimes I need to dig into the reserve when the tank is empty.

After hitting a rough patch this week I came across a card a friend had written to me a while back after opening night of my first play. I remembered how grateful I was to receive the card and how much it had meant to me. A quick flashback of the hug, the smiles, and the support. I might not have remembered what everyone said to me exactly, but I remembered how it felt. How I felt.

I got this. I took everything that came at me and I put it on stage and was able to write a comedic family story with some dramatic moments interlaced between scenes that ended the festival with laughter and applause. Everyone deserves a standing ovation at one point in their life. Everyone. And that’s the time I got mine … and I earned it.

It just takes a brief moment to help remind me of that, to remind me that I had courage once and that I could do it again. I sent my friend a text and thanked her for the card she probably forgot she had written. I wanted her to know that after a couple of years, it still mattered, her words, her support. It still helped me.

Sometimes that happens with a song too. I’ve talked about walk-up songs before, the kind that baseball players have as they’re walking up to the plate. And so to build off of my friend’s card, I busted out some tunes that would continue that I-can-do-it-feel-good vibe, because the momentum was building and I needed to feed off of it. If I hadn’t, the moment would be gone. Sports and life are similar that way, momentum plays a big part in everyone’s success.

So I’m hoping you’re riding your wave and you find old notes, and tunes that get you going in the right direction.

Buen Camino …

Irene Cara — What a Feeling

Kool and The Gang — Celebration

Randy Newman — I Love L.A.

Mary J. Blige — Just Fine

Celia Cruz — Rie y Llora

Groovie Goolies — Monster Mash

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Words on Wednesday …

28 Oct

Been waiting since 1988 when the RTD costs $1 and half of the school decided to leave after homeroom and make their way downtown to see Fernando Valenzuela, feel the mania in person, and catch a glimpse of “El Toro,” on a parade float.

It was amazing to see someone who resembled friends, neighbors, family lead the home team to an amazing victory. My dad got a new hat that year, don’t know where that one would be, as it’s not in my stash, but since he was busy working and didn’t have the luxury of leaving, parades were not in his future. So the hat helped celebrate the spirit of the neighborhood, and city.

I remember our neighbors being huge fans and celebrating the victory for days. Budweiser was the king of beers at the time and there was plenty of toasting going on.  There was an extra spring in everyone’s step.

And now I’ve got my bounce back.

Finally.

After so much heartbreak of coming up short, then getting robbed one year, and failing to reach the bar the next, it felt like the stumbling would continue.  But then it finally happened and I was able to watch and celebrate this rollercoaster ride with the kids. Making our own scrapbook  of memories. 

But to be honest, watching as a kid was a lot less stressful than watching it now.  My intensity levels keep strengthening and the faith of childhood  dreams with big comebacks don’t always show up nowadays … But I was hopeful and believed in Blue for decades because as you get older the stronger your allegiance to your team. 

I feel the stress and anxiety of these games a bit more as an adult, when you realize that second, third, or even fifth chances don’t come often.  You realize how deep it runs, the love of the game. The intensity of my fan being  puts me a little over the edge … especially when questionable pitching decisions snowballed into a disaster of an avalanche and I was left in my Costanza-Burgundy moments.

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I was more passionate about the game, and all the emotions that came with that comeback. I was grateful for the win last night. So grateful this happened to be a moment for the Jar of Awesome, sharing it with the kids … that created a memory all on it’s own. I’m hoping they’ll look back on it, just as I did. Hanging with my pops, baseball cap, and jumping up and down and screaming yesssssssssssssssssssssssss as they rushed the field.

And so I celebrate with my kids, along with the rest of the city, and enjoy the feel-good vibes that come with finally winning a World Series, of tipping my hat to players who’ve been on the roster for a long time and happy they’ve finally earned the ring they so deserve.

1988 was a long time ago.

And I was getting tired of waiting.

Hopeful … and with fingers crossed. It happened.

Picture by Wally Skalij

Buen Camino

Words on Wednesday

21 Oct

Wish I was here …

Buen Camino …

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Feel Good 5 Friday … On a Saturday

17 Oct

Lucky Charms used to be my jam Saturday mornings. I look back and remember my crazy morning hair, pouring my bowl as silently as I could and watching Mighty Mouse. He was out to save the day.

That’s the feeling I want most days. The Lucky Charms Saturday morning cartoon feeling, the kind you don’t realize is so awesome when you’re a kid and it’s happening to you. You remember the tetherball moments, Sandlot moments, swimming pools, and neighborhood block parties. Those definitely stick with you.

As I got older I left the Lucky Charms and bacon, crisp, flaky, savory bacon. That was what I lived for. I couldn’t get enough of it. When I got to college it was all about pancakes. Light fluffy, with the sweetness of peaches, bananas, strawberries, or blueberries. Saturday morning pancakes. They’ve stayed with me, even on not-so-lazy Sunday mornings. Saturday morning pancakes on any day, or night.

If I get up early enough the quiet of the morning still sits throughout the house and I can travel back in time to that Lucky Charms moment. In peace. Reminds me of Australia Pancakes, you know, the kind you have when you’re on vacation, the first vacation you’ve ever gone to by yourself and they taste like … The. Best. Pancakes. Ever.

I was thinking about that feeling all week long, remembering the Lucky Charms. I don’t think of myself as heavy on the nostalgia because I try to look focus on the present and what I want in the future. But I guess I am. I get caught up in the music, Kodak moments, and Sandlot memories and they bring me that same smile, the one you get if you’re floating in a pool and you feel relaxed, safe, and fun all at once.

If I can get that it pretty much makes my day. I felt it. Again. But this time I didn’t need pancakes. Although it inspired pancakes the very next day. My Trisha Yearwood recipe. Blueberry ones.

It was just a moment but I closed my eyes and caught it. I put the car in park and sat there with the air conditioning blasting. My eyes closed, imagining I was somewhere else. No DeLorean needed. Lucky Charms. Bacon. Pancakes. The trajectory of my life. And Jack Johnson gave me that vibe this week.

Buen Camino my friends …

Jack Johnson — Banana Pancakes

Mumford & Sons — Hopeless Wanderer

Los Diablitos — Los Caminos De La Vida

Zac Brown Band — You and the Island

Al Green — Love and Happiness

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Words on Wednesday … Stuck in an Elevator and Driver Licenses

14 Oct

Remember when you got your driver’s license for the first time? Remember that? You walked out of the DMV like Rocky Balboa feeling like I GOT thisssssssssssssssssss!

Granted I didn’t get mine until I got out of college, but I was living with a driving permit for years. Not because I didn’t want to take the test, but I actually didn’t need a car in school as the subway was the way to do, and walking. So I didn’t have a need for one really. But once I got out into the real world and started working, that license was imperative. Not just for work but for the independence that came with it. The driver’s license was much more than permission to get behind the wheel.

Now, driving doesn’t feel like an accomplishment at all, just an extension of the everyday. Parallel parking in a tight spot while random strangers are watching you from their porch? Now THAT still puts an extra spring in my step! I strut like George Jefferson when I pull that off.

But thinking about my license and traveling back in time, that was an epic day. One I looked forward to most definitely. And so during my little time traveling escapade I realized that I’ve been missing the “looking forward to” aspect.

There are little things here and there to be grateful for, can’t deny that. Parallel parking as I mentioned, rocks. Under current circumstances, gratitude makes this adventure we’re all going through better. But feeling the feels, like that driver’s license vibe … that’s missing. The assuredness that you’ve planned or prepared for something and it’s about to go down.

That’s been missing a long time.

I was reminded of that this week, though, as I couldn’t go to any of my kids’ soccer, hockey, or baseball games seeing how there was no season. Looking forward to seeing them play, their hard work and skills learned during the week tested out there, the smiles on their faces when things went right and the sighs when improvement was still needed. Or the feel of the big league stadium when you’re at the ballpark and it’s playoffs, the cheer of the collective crowd. I miss that. I don’t miss the damn beach balls that always seem to bounce in your line of vision when someone has an epic play at home plate.

The “looking forward to,” part was missing and it feels like I’ve been stuck in an elevator between the 7th and 8th floors telling everyone else stuck in there with me, ‘well when I get out, what I’m going to do is this …’ ‘

We’re all making plans, we’re all plotting out what’s gonna happen first. I mean I know Disneyland will probably be packed. No doubt.

But this elevator sucks and those doors are going to be closed for a long time. So I have to find moments until the doors open, even if they’re not driver-license worthy, they still give me something to look forward to beyond the everyday routine.

The race, for instance.

Most of the time my obstacle races and runs present both physical and mental challenges that make me laugh and feel good. Give me those Gatorade worthy moments. But this year it’s done with a virtual twist. I did my dad’s race that way and even though it wasn’t the same it did give me the looking-forward-to-it vibe. I had purpose. I felt that pitter-pat. So when a friend of mine sent me a link to a virtual race for our old school, I thought cool shirt. I’m in. I want a little something different.

It broke up the regular of this irregularity. So I had something to look forward to, something out of the ordinary. A little excitement bubbled as I joined others feeling the same way, participating, being part of a community even if we weren’t at the finish line at the same time. It was good to do a little something different, to reach a goal and to reach it with my kid. It was a good break from the stuck elevator.

🙂

And so my life remains in chunks, and even though I’ve been grateful for the wake up in the morning without Coronavirus chunk, I wish, like everyone else, that there were more driver’s license moments.

Buen camino my friends …

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Feel Good 5 Friday … On Saturday Night

10 Oct

Rebounding becomes difficult if you keep getting knocked down. But then there’s a little voice inside that keeps whispering … It’s only the fourth round. Those gloves are tight and they’re not coming off. So you get up a few more times and go.

You step up because you got no choice. You need to show up and change directions, change the flow, or time will keep wasting away like a never ending Groundhog Day.

The problem is that sometimes you have your walk-up-to-the-plate song. The warm-up song. The feel good song in the morning. And you only listen to it in the morning. You think you’re set for the rest of the day. Sometimes you are, but then there are those times you’re faced with situations you have no control over. Just random jerks right on your path, infesting your vibe and trying to drag you down.

It happens.

All it takes is a couple words. They may not be much, but the meaning and delivery gives you instant acid reflux and major side-eye as you try with every fiber of your being to Zen your way through it.

And when you can’t work out right there and then?

What do you do?

A middle of the day jam. That’s exactly what needs to happen in order to get you over some things. The one that puts those problems in the rear view mirror and you ain’t looking back. You looking ahead now, and that tune helps you get rid of that funk.

You hear it and you’re ready for the next round that life is about to throw at you.

Sometimes you need something with a beat late in the day to help you remember how you woke up this morning. You woke up ready to rise and shine.

Buen Camino …

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Roger & Zapp

One Way — Cutie Pie

Johnny Ventura — Patacon Pisao

Pointer Sisters — Jump

Diana Ross — Upside Down

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