Tag Archives: moments

Feel Good 5 Friday … On A Saturday Night

22 Aug

Sometimes the week’s or day’s events harden you a little bit more and even with a weary heart you go on and you find the softness in moments where you can find them, the kind that take you back and you can see yourself in the mirror again.

Sometimes it’s life during a pandemic, sometimes it happens even if the pandemic didn’t exist. Jobs you don’t like, moments you have to endure, or toxic people that still try to poison your well with their words or actions

Bit by bit, pieces chipped away and all you’re trying to do is get them back.

But you find moments of strength that help you endure. The ocean serves as a great salvation, as do morning hugs and laughter from my kids, early morning runs, or punching sessions with the MuayThai gloves. Laughter because of a good comedian makes you feeeeeeeeel yourself again. The smile that you saw in pictures way back, makes an appearance and a sigh of relief fills your chest.

But when I can’t get any of that and I’m feeling off, I put on the playlist. Sometimes it’s the slower tunes with deeper lyrics that get me to turn the corner.

They build.

And that helps reconstruct some of the pieces in you that felt broken. Zac Brown Band is always a go-to for me and never lets me down, with all the albums I own, he gets his feel good tunes any time of day. And the Brothers Osborne have that deep soothing voice and cool melody, I fell for this song and it caught my heart. Love the build. I flashed back to Los Angeles Azuuuuuuuuuules because they jam with other artists to make better sounds. My Blue-Eyed souls, the ones that bring it every time, my Hall & Oates, whose concert rocked epically, always get me with this song. And it’s a sad song, but it makes me feel better. Makes me feel. Just the sound of their voices. Bob Dylan’s son with his Wallflowers, when I hear this tune I need to stop and let it sink in. That opening and that vibe they got going, it reverberates and changes my frequency.

And that’s what needed.

These songs make me feel something different. Sometimes it’s a time machine sending me back to a moment or place that made me smile or feel good, sometimes it’s the they-probably-wrote-this-for-me reflection, and sometimes it’s the wishing part of the song, the one in the pocket between the chords, after the bridge that makes you feel connected.

I was in the midst of all that and it helped me breathe a little deeper. Feel-good vibes tingling my heart and building the part of me that’s important. Growing.

Buen Camino, my friends!

 

Brothers Osborne — Stay A Little Longer

(note I couldn’t find the original video for this song but was able to find the audio version)

 

Zac Brown Band – Homegrown

 

Angeles Azules – Acariname

 

Wallflowers — One Headlight

 

Hall & Oates – She’s Gone

 

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Feel Good 5 Friday … On A Saturday

15 Aug

Some already began their journey, but we had a little time left before our clock started.

No more morning runs, bike rides, tennis matches or Sandlot games. I’m going to miss it. It’s back to the Ticonderoga No.2 pencil and binders, or in this case computers.

Made me think of my school days and the tunes that I hear take me back to those Levi Jeans and Aquanet hairspray days before that 7:45 am bell. My Kevin Arnold days. Hoping the kids remember the songs they hear and it takes them back. Great music lasts. Especially 70s and 80s tunes being heard in 2020. Well there whole lives, really. It leads to good memories. Good moments. Good times. No matter what age.

Even with Back to School creeping up on us it looks a little different this time around. But there’s one page that exists in this Silver Linings Playbook, we’ve spent even more time together. And that’s a lot of dance sessions, mixed tape running jams, and feel-good morning songs. And although some days it seems like the clock is slowly ticking away, and I see the gray hairs growing in my tired lion’s mane, we manage to find some moments of gratitude so that the sands of time feel different.

Trying to make things lighter as the heaviness of this pandemic hits us in different ways.

And their annual summer ice cream for dinner extravaganza made the smiles last a little longer as the sprinkles and Chocolate Magic Shell syrup made appearances. Drizzles everywhere. They look forward to this treat every year. And with these times, why not hit the 2.0 version. Banana split it.

This was one of their moments of gratitude, they slowed down. They closed their eyes and took it in. Rocky Road rocks, especially with an epic playlist.

In general the kids smile, laugh, and feel loved. But the goodnight hugs that night were extra squishy.

Buen Camino my friends!

Frankie Vallie– Grease

George Benson — Give Me The Night

Kenny Loggins — Footloose

Human League — Fascination

Toto — Africa

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Feel Good 5 Friday

7 Aug

Still under lock down stay-at-home orders it’s the one thing that I’m looking forward to …

SHARK WEEK!

Andy Casagrande.

Do you know him?

He’s the man. There are so many biologist and camera people that bring us the awesomeness and beauty of sharks. And we’re all excited to catch what’s gonna happen next week.

Shark Week is my jam. I nerd out and feel like George Costanza, that I too can become a marine biologist. With limited beach access it’s the one open-water thrill that makes me feel closer to the ocean and protecting the life that lives in it.

I’m looking forward to Sharkadelic Summer and Mako Nation. My son is a bigger fan than my daughter, but we all cozy up on the couch and watch. We learn something new every time and it’s been a good family tradition. As long as I can remember we watch this week-long event together, shark cupcakes and all.

The week has got me feeling all the great vibes and in honor of these warm smiley emotions I got my beach mixed tape playing all week. When you’re driving to the market and you hear that beat drop … mannnnnnn!

That irritability hides somewhere else in the background because it can’t share the same space as this music. The feeling dissolves and the smile happens. Just like that, you feel good and the frustrations of the day are on pause. Lightness of being is on play.

These tunes coming out my radio frequency and I imagine heading up PCH to feel the warm sand between my toes, and a bit a fresh air … far away from everyone and everything.

Tunes are magical that way. So is Shark Week.

Wishing you sunshine and waves …

Buen Camino!

Carlos Vives — La Gota Fria

Beach Boys Good Vibrations

Los Moonlights — Rosa Maria

Zac Brown Band — Knee Deep

Mungo Jerry — In the Summertime

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Words on Wednesday

29 Jul

Not much in the way of amazing happening on my side of the globe. Awesome Jar moments are few now that our adventures became limited. I mean other than the Dodgers beating the Asstros in Houston as baseball returned.

Well, that one just made me smile.

Hard to get hits when no one is telling you what pitch is coming. I know, I know. Some people neeeeeeed those trash cans to succeed.

So taking in what little sports we get before they shut it down again, is something that fills me with joy.

But magic happens outside sports nowadays. I mean we were supposed to be watching The Olympics and cheering for people on the track and court, in addition to the pool.

Now we cheer for ourselves and our little victories, and catch the moments when we can, outdoors.

And sometimes you catch a good one. Something you haven’t seen in a while.

I remember the first time seeing one was probably at Sea World when I was a kid. You member Sea World? We’d pack in the tan station wagon and make the trek to check out Shamu.

Road trips back in the day, during my Kevin Arnold moments when sitting in the back without seat belts was fine, you know because we were invincible.

But while we were out exploring the aquatic park, my favorites had to be the dolphins. Something about their very nature that intrigued me. I’d seen a few in the ocean after that, every now and then, but it would only be a few and they’d be far away. This week I caught a pod of 10-15 dolphins swimming alongside a paddle boarder, jumping high enough that people noticed. With all that magic, I thought Aquaman himself was gonna come splashing out.

I got up from my chair to take a closer look.

Not many cool things happening that aren’t artificial or produced. But this one was genuine. Pleasant. So much so that I forgot to snap a shot. I just watched them. That paddle boarder had one of the best encounters ever. He stayed the course and kept going, with his posse passing him.

It was a small moment, something to be appreciated.

I enjoyed the early morning when there was no crowd and the spot was quiet, just the sound of the waves on shore. People started trickling in and I was grateful that parking was a hassle, as it was extremely limited. Kept the number of people low.

So with a semi–private space and my toes in the warm sand I welcomed a new day.

Buen Camino my Friends!

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Feel Good Friday on a Saturday … 5 Before 45

25 Jul

I made an appointment with myself this morning.

I mean, I make doctor’s appointments, parent-teacher conferences, coach’s meetings, practice sessions, camping arrangements. That was all prior to Covid-19. Now I make virtual meetings, virtual campouts, virtual summer camps, virtual book club, virtual everything. I make the everything appointments.

Everything but myself.

Haven’t done too many of those when we’re all supposed to be hunkered down. There’s little room here.

But needed a moment to think.

So I found some space. Something big was happening and I needed to clear my head. I needed a moment with myself to do something without the kids. So I woke up just at the same time the sun did, laced up my Saucony running shoes for the last time as a 44-year old.

I try to make time stop, slow it down on the last day. I try to get just one moment that day, do something fun, something Zen, something that makes me laugh, something that makes me feel good, like waking-up-early-to-watch-Saturday-morning-cartoons-when-I-was-a-kid good. Something with that vibe. Gives me perspective on the day before I turn one year older. I like to pause.

Early is the way to go when you’re trying to avoid people. Not too many feel the need to rise on up on Saturday morning. Not even myself. But today I did. And it was a good thing.

After I sprinted the last 200 yards with my heart pounding, trying to catch my breath, I felt it. I crossed my imaginary finish line marked by the parking sign and the sweat falling underneath my Cal Bears cap.

I closed my eyes and took a deep breath. And there it was, between the heartbeats. Brief. But it was there for me, a moment to be present, a moment of gratitude, a moment of pause. I enjoyed looking up at the sky and feeling the sun. 44 was leaving. But the mixed tape that went with it was worth it.

I don’t know what year 45 around the sun looks like, I know it will include Ben & Jerry’s that’s for sure. I’m celebrating the ending of year 44 with pint. But if year 45 is better than year 44, then I’m doing a good job. Moment by moment. Step by step.

 

Katrina and the Waves — Walking on Sunshine

 

La Sonora Dinamita — Se Me Perdio La Cadenita

UB40 — The Way You do The Things You Do

 

Los Tucanes de Tijuana — La Chona

 

Phil Collins — That’s All

 

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Buen Camino my friends!

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Weekend Moments on Wednesday

22 Jul

When I saw the crowds I thought this was a terrible mistake. We should have woken up earlier, we should have gone to some remote beach at daybreak.

But we wanted something different, something a little special. Nowadays little special somethings go a long way. The Great Outdoors has always afforded me an opportunity to do that, but because of the current pandemic situation, life has been limited.

Crowds are something that isn’t, unfortunately.

When you’re at a concert or game they’re great! You feel the vibe and energy. But when I was trying to find peace. Not so much. Even before the pandemic. Crowds burned me out. The beach. The Park. Morning runs. Lakes. I avoided them. Or at least tried.

So I was grateful for the long hike up the mountain, even though I wasn’t a fan of hiking, it proved to be a good step back, for a positive forward move. You see, not many people managed that. Most of the crowd walked a couple yards and stayed close to the road or parking. Half a football field, I guess. Their lack of exercise was my gain. As most people didn’t want to hike up the mountain and venture further up. The fact that they weren’t socially distancing or wearing masks was concerning. I thought this outing was going to be a disaster. But turns out the more we hiked the less people we found. The hidden nature escape appeared.

The Outdoors became the Kodak moment that made the day better. A recharging station for when your depleted spirit needed it most.

Something about nature turned it around. Especially when we discovered a surprise…

Waterfalls bring smiles. Especially on a 12th birthday.

The entire adventure helped bring about some wonderful firsts, like first time fishing in a river, first time losing the fishing pole and swimming against the current in the cold deep to retrieve it, first time hiking to a waterfall, and first time cooling off underneath it.

First time bucket list adventures with the kids stayed with me and granted us moments of gratitude that still linger.

Buen Camino, friends!

Feel Good 5 Friday … on Saturday

20 Jun

Starting to trim it down. The unnecessary. That’s what Covid is doing for some people under quarantine. The stuff you thought was so important matters less. Substance makes its way to the front.

Finding little moments and bringing gratitude into the fold make the days count.

Feel Good 5 Friday wrapped up in music and feel-good vibes. The kind of tunes that get your shoulders grooving and your feet bumping. I got the funk of the 70s making its way back to me and filling my morning runs and walks with the bellbottom vibes I need to keep the spring in my step.

But I also got some Latin flavors from an epic band that remind me of my youth and doing chores to their music. Flashbacks of vacuum cleaners, sponges, and Ajax accompanied this song so as not to make mundane housework so dreadful. And the twist from one music icon honoring another inspired me this week. That kind of music and performance and feeling make you want to do better. To rise.

And those moments were good to listen to and to watch. But I had something extra special to highlight of Feel Good 5 Friday.

Everyone has at least one moment during the week where something, or someone, made them smile. We need some of that at this time and I found an undiscovered wave of goodness a couple of weeks ago but wanted to highlight it today.

Tabitha Brown. Have you heard of her?

She’s what I need during this quarantine She spreads smiles and goodness with her warmth and safe advice, like if I want to add more garlic then I should because as Tabitha says it’s my business.

Now I’m no vegan or vegetarian, but this lady right here, makes me want to double up on my daily 5. She makes the day. She’s the girl you want to hang out with for sure.

And after I’ve done some cooking and gotten my good vibes from Tabitha the tunes that gave me the warm and fuzzies kept me going when I couldn’t find a smile.

Earth Wind and Fire -Let’s Groove

Kool and the Gang -Ladies’ Night

Los Angeles Azules

Sting singing Bruce- Rising

Tabitha Brown

Father’s Day tomorrow … hoping all the Dads have a good one 🙂

Buen Camino my friends!

Finding The Moments Adds Space

25 Apr

So in all this togetherness I’m beginning to realize that there’s not a lot of space left. Space for a breather, space to take a minute. Like to exhale. That only comes at night when everyone else is asleep. But the sun is gone and the mosquitoes are out so there’s no outdoor anything happening, not even to the small patio.

I can’t imagine what a family of five must feel like. Not any one … A working-class family of five. Oof. Or maybe just three kids under the age of five. Dude.

Parents out there … I feel you. I feeeeeel you. You have to tag out sometimes just for sanity’s sake. But what if you have no partner? What if you can’t just leave when you need to?

That’s a rough one, that’s when the grays start popping up and you immediately try to remember how to take deep breaths so as to prevent a heart attack, because you feel it rising up inside of you. The frustrations of parenting in this tight environment gets to you. I mean it makes the small space you inhabit even smaller.

Quiet always feels good to parents after sustained chaos. But I also hear that loneliness takes its toll if you’re single and don’t have the loudness surrounding you 14 hours a day. Company and conversation are missed as you can only take so much alone time or online meetings. Connection is missed. And your space feels small.

Everyone’s struggle is different. Sometimes someone else’s plate looks better. But that’s for everyone.

Hang in there parents …

So you just try to find a moment … something that made you laugh or something that ended up right after a whole lot of wrong. Dude.

Listening to good poets slam their beats and touch a heart string to create a smile. That felt good, even if it was just a couple minutes while the kids played Legos. Finding a funny sign and it making you laugh, not just smile, but laugh.

Planting a garden from scratch for Earth Day felt like an accomplishment. It will be a while before I see any results but we still took steps in the right direction.

Talking to friends on the phone in a video chat gave a few of them a very needed outlet of expression and relief.

Finding the little moments add up at the end of the day, or week … Homeschooling distance learning week three went well as all work was finished by Friday and the kids continued to learn something new not just go through the motions. Sparta and Athens. Fractions and order of operations happen in real life, like when measuring and baking banana nut bread muffins, and step two needs to happen before step 4. Clouds have names, like cumulus, and they mean something to the weather. Learning to play the Star Wars theme song on your saxophone. Recycling old crayons was the best surprise moment as it was something new and in the process we created art for Earth Day.

Baseball was still the funnest lesson as Abbott and Costello informed them on who was on first.

Finding the moments helps expands your space.

Buen Camino my friends!

🙂

Looking Through The Right Lens …

29 Jul

Turning the corner feels so good, when the day before seemed like such a nightmare.

I was secretly hoping things were going to get better but I didn’t want to jinx myself. It’s weird when people think like that, I know. But I was just hoping for a little luck from the universe, and it turns out, the universe was definitely conspiring with me that day.

Even though we had to cancel our Bucket List Adventures that day, turning 41 ended up being pretty good. I found so many tiny blessings that added up to such a cool day, small moments to be super grateful for, and if I hadn’t been looking, my perspective would have been so different. So glad I was looking through the right lens …

beach

🙂

 

101-degree fevers and vomit gone …

No traffic on the way and Flock of Seagulls on the radio …

Realizing it’s 99 degrees where you live but a cool 77 on your beach spot …

Warm sand, low tide, cool waters, and no beach space invaders …

Catching some awesome boogie board waves that make you feel like you’re on a the Travel Channel Special, in slow motion, and Morgan Freeman is narrating  …

Great picnic with no sand in the sandwiches …

Splashing in the waves, hearing my kids laugh, hearing my own laugh …

Relaxing on a Tommy Bahama Beach Chair and taking a moment, a couple actually, to check out the peaceful scene …

Driving out for an early dinner and not getting lost on the way …

Eating the best fish tacos I’ve had in 12 years … Duuuuude.

Driving home, in traffic, but kids watching Despicable Me and I’m bopping my head to The Boss, The Zac Brown Band, The Rolling Stones,Tears for Fears, The Beastie Boys, New Edition, and La Pollera Colorada … ahhh best mixed tape ever …

Chocolate cake with chocolate frosting, flan, triple chocolate mousse, one candle, a happy birthday song, and a great wish waiting for me at home …

Buen Camino my friends.

 

 

Small Moments On A Buen Camino …

25 Jul

101-degree fevers accompanied by vomit and tears?

It might end up being a tradition.

Maybe.

Three years in a row when everything that can go wrong does go wrong on the night before? Yeah, maybe. It’s Birthday Eve and I’m remembering last year and being in a somewhat similar position where things beyond my control were out of control. Well it’s happened again, only this time I had to cancel a trip because of it.

sea-cave-kayaing-santa-barbara

Image from Santa Barbara Adventure Company at Channel Islands National Park

 

No bucket list adventures for me this time around, no sea cave kayaking off the coast of California to ring in another year. The Birthday Eve bad luck bandit has struck again.

But …

It was Birthday Eve … it was Birthday Eve two years in  a row where I had to ask for grace and work hard to find the bits and pieces of gratitude throughout the day. It happened on Birthday Eve and I expected it continue onto the next day. But come sunrise things changed.

The universe decided to rain sunshine down on me and helped turn things around. I found spectacular moments to be grateful for on my adventure last year, and so I’m counting on that happening again. I’m counting on all that bad luck hitting the night before, making way for blessings and happy moments for the next day.  The day.

I was sad about cancelling our trip, our little get away on such short notice, but vomit, fever, and kids are unpredictable on vacation. So no hotels, no kayaks, no sea adventures.

So now Plan B is in full effect …

They’re turning the corner and health is looking up. So day trip is in my future tomorrow. Just a single day trip with small moments of happiness and gratitude throughout. That’s  what I’m hoping for …small moments that will eventually add up … small moments that turn the corner on a Buen Camino.

 

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