Monday, August 31, 2009


something my roommate, emily, and i try to do is encourage one another. even when we know each other is in the wrong, we still pump each other up. if one of us makes a mistake, or if we have any sort of problem, work, boy, family related, we try to make each other feel better by singing our praises. why not make one another feel better? compliments are so wonderful. there is nothing better than having a friend, that every time you see, makes you feel so good about yourself and you know that they truly are enjoying your company. i have many friends like that and for that, i am incredibly thankful.

my senior year of college, i took a class called women and depression. it was one of the best courses i have ever taken. we met in the women's center and sat in the lounge in a circle of couches. there were a dozen of us. we discussed our lives. we learned so much from one another. women's studies classes at uvm were wonderful because they weren't traditional. we had no tests. we only had one assignment to complete by the end of the semester, and that was to go into the burlington community and volunteer for thirty or so hours at an organization of our choice and write about our experience. imagine that! our only major assignment was to do good in the world! this class was perfection. i left with so much knowledge. on maintaining balance. on being mindfull. on dealing with life.

one of the last classes, our wonderful professor had us all write our names on a blank greeting card. they were then passed around the room for everyone to write a message describing that person. just as a reminder of who you are. a reminder of your positive qualities and what people have gained from being in your presence.

this is what my classmates wrote about me:

  • a model for those of us who don't smile enough. you bring positive energy to the world.
  • fun presence, giving and strong.
  • very fun! i enjoyed your energy! it is so refreshing to hear of your travels.
  • bubbly and enthusiastic. you positively invest in your surroundings.
  • very introspective and able to relax people and put them at ease.
  • funny, strong, positive, inspirational!
  • grounded, positive energy that brims with kindness and understanding.
  • very calm and peaceful! you are positive, relaxed and always have something intelligent to say.
  • so positive and caring! i love how your stories always end on a high note. keep smiling - you're beautiful.
  • you're very bright and i love the way you dictate your thoughts (and by that i mean the way you speak)
  • ridiculous! clever and honest, a great combo!
  • positive, thoughtful, engaging and serene
isn't that absolutely wonderful? i wish everyone has an opportunity to have such nice and thoughtful words written about them on a card to carry around. it's like a movie that gets the most positive of reviews - from absolutely everyone who ever saw it. it is truly incredible. never underestimate the power of kind words!

this exercise was and still is so special to me. i now live in a crazy city where sometimes i feel as though i am so lost. it's easy to feel like that in new york. when i first moved here, i read my card everyday. it reminds me of who i am. reading this just brings me back to center. when i am feeling down, nothing makes me feel as good as this card does. it is one of my most valued possessions.

i truly was given the best gift of all. completely positive feedback. written down. for me. forever.

i wonder if my professor knew how meaningful this exercise was and how it was something we could always take with us. i bet she did.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

a good idea

buying balloons was definitely a good idea. they make me happy and everyone smiled at me as i walked home from the party store with them.

Friday, August 28, 2009

this weekend

my weekend plans are rather simple but perfect and lovely.

  • wander around manhattan with an old friend
  • go to chinatown and pick up ingredients to make seaweed salad
  • buy a balloon
  • go to the craft store to begin my newest hobby: watercolor
  • dog watch off my fire escape 
and see wherever else this weekend takes me. i am ready to explore and enjoy. i hope you do too!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

paper people

the silliest activities make me the most happy. yesterday, i had the rather brilliant idea of making a paper people chain! i even love just typing it out. writing this entry makes me smile. anyway, i thought of the idea around 12pm and was just itching for the workday to be over so i could run to the craft store on 6th avenue & 13th street and pick up my supplies. i love being so involved in a craft project, especially one so whimsical, that time flies by without me realizing it. that is the best feeling, to be so excited and creative. i think i am going to mail my paper ladies to a randomly selected friend. i am positive they will brighten their day.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


if you would like to enjoy yourself after a hectic day, or after a really happy day that you just want to enjoy even more – may i suggest a cup of tea? preferably miller harris thé pétales with three sugar lumps.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

daily wisdom

i have a page-a-day calendar that i got from a co-worker on the first day of my job, january 5th, 2009. i remember flipping to dates in the future, like my birthday, which had just passed, and thought how far away it seemed. i wrote a happy birthday message to myself in january. how thoughtful of me. this calendar really brings me joy each morning. sometimes the quotes are very silly. sometimes the quotes are very serious. sometimes they are from the infinite wisdom of kermit the frog. i tore off the best vitamin for developing friendship is b1 and taped it to our fridge.

today my quote is:
mix a little foolishness with your serious plans: it’s lovely to be silly at the right moment.

i love that and for anyone who has talked to me within the past few weeks knows that is truly appropriate for me right now.

another favorite quote of mine, from june eighth:
when you talk, you repeat what you already know; when you listen, you often learn something.

i’ve been carrying that around with me in my briefcase ever since.

Monday, August 24, 2009

dandelion pesto

dandelion pesto

dandelion pesto is the perfect summer treat.


  • 2 cups tightly packed dandelion leaves, rinsed and dried
  • 1 dozen large basil leaves
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup pine nuts
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
  • kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


in a blender, pulse together dandelion leaves, basil, garlic, and nuts. scrape down the sides of the bowl. with the motor running, add olive oil and process until a smooth paste forms. pulse in cheese. season to taste with salt and pepper. makes 3 1/2 cups.

et voila! make it. i think you'll like it!

summer forever

Friday, August 21, 2009


one summer, i was walking down the street with annalise and said "who has a free bicycle?" in a relatively quiet voice. a man jumped off his front porch, said that he did, and then led us to the back of his house and gave me a free bicycle.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


anyone that has ever talked to me for longer than ten minutes knows that i am a sincere believer in the law of attraction. it’s all about emitting positive vibrations, thinking positive thoughts and partaking in positive actions to attract exactly what you want. within this theory, you have to trust your instincts, know what you want and take a lot of risks. you just have to trust that everything will turn out right and put complete faith in the fact that the universe will give you what you want. manifest your heart’s desire!

the best part of this, is that you'll start recognizing everything coming together, tons of synchronicities will appear. things will become clearer and you’ll recognize the path that is going to make you the happiest. but you have to be very brave, you most certainly can not take a cautious route and you can not give out negative vibrations, thoughts or actions – or that is what you will get in return. we all have those negative friends that everything just always seems to go wrong with them, that is not a coincidence. we also know people where everything always goes well and things work out smoothly for them. that is what they are sending out and that is what they are receiving.

i have many favorite stories and instances as to when the law of attraction was at work. one of my favorites involves my roommate, emily.

emily is a perfect friend to have. you can always count on her (except to answer her phone – and she knows that this is a problem). she is very loyal and very cool. I always say she is a lot cooler than i am, in every way. we weren’t that close when we first started to live together our junior year, but that pretty much immediately changed. we lived together for two years and midway through senior year we realized that we couldn’t go on being apart from each other after college. so we decided to move together. emily’s loyalty was really exemplary when she agreed to move to georgia with me, a dream of mine. but alas, we ended up planning for nyc. months and months passed. she would stay at my parent's house in connecticut with me and we would schedule interviews to be on the same day and ride into the city together. our dream seemed so far away, yet we weren’t really ever that discouraged. we would have our off days, but really relied on each other to keep our spirits up.

and then, miracle of all miracles, i got a job! and so now emily needed one and we needed an apartment and then we were on the fast track to living the dream.

anyway, i digress, this was supposed to be about the law of attraction but turned into professing my love for emily and our frustrating job search.

basically, we find the most charmingly petite apartment in the west village and emily moves into the city sans job. she starts working at the coolest coffee shop in the city but still needs full-time employment. so after a month and a half, two opportunities come her way and she schedules two interviews on the same day. one at a publishing giant and one at a strategic brand design agency. the next day, said publishing giant offers her a job and she takes it. she hears nothing from the design agency. she starts that monday. she is an executive assistant. she works eleven hours a day under severe pressure from her boss. she comes home miserable and stressed out. kind of like a lab rat in distress. everyday. even on weekends she can't relax. and after doing this for a month, she realized, that this is no way to live life. so she quits. while living in an insanely expensive city in “these hard economic times”- she quits! emily is a genius. emily is a wise fool. and, emily is, most importantly, very brave.

oh yea, so the law of attraction:

she starts her job search over. i tell her she should call the branding agency and check in on her status as an interviewee because it has only been a few weeks since the interview, and maybe they haven’t made a decision yet. but they did. and it wasn’t her. so she continues her job search. the next week she gets a phone call. it’s them. their first choice didn’t work out. they want emily to come in for a trial week. they love her. she loves them. they offer her the job before the week is over.

how is that for a synchronicity?

shortly before this all happened, i made emily read my law of attraction book because she was really cynical about it and thought i was nuts for how i was constantly referring to it. if you want to check out a straightforward, comprehensive book on the law of attraction, read michael losier’s book.

my next read is pronoia is the antidote for paranoia: how the whole world is conspiring to shower you with blessings by rob brezsny. and if you don’t already, check out his weekly astrology reports, it’s not your average horoscope.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

soul crafts

annie had recently posted on soul collages. i figured i would too. (and p.s. read her blog because it is wildly hilarious)

annie and i lived together in a big, white, haunted house in college (along with five of our other friends, could we go back in time?) we did many things together. she is just one of those friends, you know? we bicycled, we concocted stews combining our favorite ingredients and tried to get our friends to eat them, we treasure hunted, we scavenged, we ate excessive amounts of candy, we crafted, we attended monthly classes on different usages of herbs, we prank called attractive boys. we really did it all.

and we were also very involved on campus in a group called the paradigm project. it was run through the university of vermont's women’s center and brought awareness to sexual and domestic violence through numerous events. in some ways, i think we were really integral parts of this organization but most of the time we were the eccentric misfits (luckily, we were unconditionally accepted by all – woohoo!). we attended every meeting. we took part in every event. but by the end of our senior year, anytime serious work needed to be done we’d be glaring at each other from across the room and giggling because we were freaking lazy seniors and knew actual work was beyond our attention span at that point. that being said, we were usually assigned to making the posters.

along with paradigm, we were always participating in women related events in burlington. every year, uvm hosts the dismantling rape culture conference, a full day event. upon arrival, attendees were able to choose a few lectures that appealed to them. annie and i, sitting in the auditorium immediately chose a few workshops, and when i suggested the soul collage workshop, annie was hesitant. little did she know it would change her life. it was a delightful crafting activity that inspired us (for the rest of our lives?)

this is how you make a soul collage:

materials: tons of magazines (advertisements and catalogs will also do), thick-ish paper to mount the collage on, glue, scissors, rhinestones (optional but wildly necessary)

instructions: have a clear mind and do not think about what you’re about to create. whatever happens will be perfect. cut out anything that speaks to your soul. it doesn’t have to directly be of an object. it could be a landscape, it could be a pattern, a texture, a color, anything. piece it all together and glue it down.

et voila!

the best thing about a soul collage is that it always turns out perfectly. there is no way that you can do it wrong. it represents so much and yet is gloriously fun. from that point on everything in our lives was about the soul and figuring out what made us the happiest! finding treasures that spoke to our souls was such a delight! soul fabrics! soul flowers! soul patterns! soul music! soul mates! life is wonderful.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


today is my birthday and i am twenty three!

ashley surprised me with these elephant cupcakes. aren't they wonderful? i had an absolutely perfect weekend celebrating with my friends. i love birthdays and i feel good.

Saturday, August 08, 2009


saturdays are the best days for sleeping in.

Thursday, August 06, 2009


i took a trip to london a few weeks ago. it was certainly charming.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009


my grandma (hello nana!) gave this handkerchief to me last summer.

she had sewn it for her mother (leah) when she was eight. eight!
i think it is absolutely perfect.

Monday, August 03, 2009


in college, my focus was in women and gender studies.
i had that perfect college experience within this area. intense, intelligent and inspiring professors and equally passionate peers. i became involved on campus and in the community. i planned to graduate, move to georgia and work for a non-profit that dealt with women’s issues. (preferably the girl scouts!)

but i have to admit, i was feeling burnt out. things didn’t affect me the way that they used to. i would not say i was losing speed, but i was becoming a bit numb to it all.
was this the way to begin my next chapter?

after a turn of events, i then completely changed my direction.
thanks to my mom, laura tonatto and sandro botticelli.

i was in italy shortly after graduating.while there, i smelled a fragrance that laura tonatto had created using the flowers painted in botticelli's the birth of venus.

painting: eyes :: fragrance: nose! and the stories behind the fragrances! and the memories they can conjure up! what a beautiful thing!

a few months after this trip, I was talking to annie at four in the morning and i had another one of those realizations…

why not pursue exactly what i wanted to do?

and so I did.

i now have a job at an extraordinary fragrance company and among the (massive) clutter surrounding my office desk, hangs my botticelli print acquired at the uffizi gift shop.

and the statue (costing all of 11 euros from a street vendor) is still one of my favorite purchases.


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