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I’m walking down the street, my khaki trench wrapped tightly around me and my burberry scarf flapping in the wind. It’s chilly, brisk even, with the smell of autumn in the air. I have a lunch date with a friend who I haven’t seen in months and I’m already running late -damn these heels!

I’ve spent the last year in London finishing my third book and have arrived in New York City with a renewed enthusiasm. New York, my second home, stole my heart years ago and I’ve decided it’s time to make it official. I’m moving back!

My husband and I have decided to keep it modest and renovate a three story brownstone in Manhattan. Decorated in the classic American style, we’ve kept it simple but elegant with clean lines and soft fabric. Nothing too uptight for us, aesthetics are key but not always functional. Plus, with two small children running around we need to be somewhat practical. Crate & Barrel, William Sonoma…all my new best friends. The children and our live-in nanny will occupy the second floor, our master suite and home office on the third. A modest guest room, living room, formal dining and spacious kitchen are all on the main level. Our home is our haven, creating a space for entertaining and relaxation.

I make it to the restaurant just a moment before I’m considered late and spot my friend. I’m escorted to her favorite booth and we embrace. It’s been close to a year since her last party in Paris, held at an estate high above the sprawling city to celebrate her birthday. A well known singer, song writer and vocalist she is known to travel extensively and I am lucky to have caught her in the city for a lunch date. She has a proposition: her home in the Hamptons is vacant for the upcoming summer while she’s touring in the South of France. Would I be interested in a summer home?

But of course.

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Ladies, there is nothing more depressing than seeing most of you walk in heels. Your ankles collapse, your back is hunched…please STOP. Now read this post on how to correctly and gracefully walk in your pumps.

1. Make sure, first of all, that you are wearing the appropriate size of shoe. Many women buy shoes too small, expecting them to stretch. Depending on your climate they might. Depending on their brand, they might as well. The cheaper, the more likelier they’ll stretch. Also, how are your arches? High? Low? Non-existent? Proper arch support is key for walking in heels. Without proper support for the entire foot you won’t get too far.

2. Now assuming your shoes fits correctly let’s spend a few minutes discussing posture. The majority of Americans have poor, if not just plain offensive, posture. Take a moment and do the following: sit up straight, tuck the pelvis under (as if you were sucking in your lower belly), roll the shoulders back and instead of doing a full circle stop when you feel the shoulder blades peak and come together. Now….HOLD

3. Easy enough sitting down right? Now stand and repeat the above mentioned exercise. Notice even your head naturally responds, causing the eyes to look up versus down at the floor?  Might feel a little funny at first – this is normal – but keep placing yourself in the proper position to train your muscles. (The really cool part? Proper posture not only makes you look great in heels, it also reduces migraines, improves breathing function and capacity, as well as inhibits the formation of the hot hunchback look in your 70’s!)

4.  Now we get to the real meat of the matter – walking. Left, right, left, right…I was trained to walk as a child by a grandmother whose English background advocated heavy books and marbles. Some of you might know what that means. For others, feel lucky. Now, with head held high start walking. I guarantee you aren’t consciously aware of your steps. Some of you just plow forward. But take a moment to actually consider the way you walk. Instead of barreling through life, step with purpose.

5. Ankles. Like our knees they take the brunt of our daily life. We wonder why so many people have knee/ankle/feet issues? They don’t walk with purpose. Notice your alignment…stand infront of a mirror in heels and check out how your ankles align with your knees, hips and shoulders. Some of us (thanks genetics) have wider hips and our ankles and knees need to compensate for the width with a wider stance. Do your ankles splay out? Collapse in? Strengthening your ankles is, in my opinion, one of the best things you can do for your body. Your senior self will thank you, trust me.

6. You may be walking a bit taller now, making eye contact and wearing the right shoe. Stepping with purpose, you are aware of your alignment and are thinking your ankles are weak. This is normal and easily fixed. My go-tos? Ankle stretches in the evening (ankle rolls, extensions, massage) and acupuncture. Scar tissue build up and inflammation will take you out of your heels faster than Tiger found a new mistress, PREVENT before you RESENT. You’ll kick yourself in the butt when the recuperation period costs more and takes you away from what you love (your shoes) if you could have prevented it in the first place.

7. Lastly, love your shoes. No matter if they are 5 inches to flats. When you love what you wear and feel sexy, you stand taller, hold your head higher and smile brighter. Now go get ’em cougar…

Phil's and my placeholder for our former wedding website with WeddingChannel.com

The wedding train has officially arrived. My friends, across all levels, have either recently married, gotten engaged or are ring shopping. And it’s easy to fall into line.

Once, three years ago, I was engaged. I had a beautiful, nearly 2 carat solitaire ring on my finger. The wedding planning was under way, the guest list forming and my future looked bright. We were going to get married, have children and then…well that’s as far as I could see. Problem was, it wasn’t what I really wanted. It wasn’t “me.” And neither was the ring…

Though gorgeous and extremely expensive, my ring felt cold and heavy. A thick platinum band supported a bright, large rock. That rock represented bondage. And the band kept it tethered to my dainty finger. The hardest question I had to answer was…

“Am I ready, for the rest of my, life, to marry this man? Be faithful, loyal, through the good and the bad? To be forever a Mrs. instead of a Miss?”

My answer was eventually a resounding no and we ended our 10 year relationship, our 1.5 year engagement. This year my ex-fiance proposed to his new girlfriend and they have a wedding planned for early 2011. My initial reaction was shock but now I see we just weren’t meant to be. With his and my best friend’s wedding on the horizon I’ve accepted that I’m just not ready yet. And that’s ok. Because one day that ring will slip on my finger and that ring, along with that man, will feel like they’ve never not been there before. Instead of an extension of myself, marriage will be a puzzle piece, completing me in every way I can’t even fathom.

 
  

I lettered in Cheerleading during high school. I know, right? Surprise surprise! I was that girl who proudly and enthusiastically cheered my way through four years of the hell that is high school. I sauntered around in my short skirt. Flipped my little ribbon tied ponytail. And shook the pom-poms my mama gave me.

At the end of the day, no matter what life throws at me, I realize I’m still that cheerleader. I cheer for the guy who always finishes last. I cheer for the girl who has her heart stomped on and stands up again for round 100. The kid who didn’t get picked on the playground. The friend who’s at a loss why her boyfriend dumped her….the list goes on and on. But I realize I rarely cheer for me. When times get tough, I only get tougher…on myself. If I’ve failed, faltered or mis-stepped I belittle my efforts, no matter how grand or genuine. When down in the dumps I often wonder, where’s my cheerleader? And then I realize, as I have this morning, that though I am head cheerleader of my life I’ve assembled my own squad of loyal and loving Glitterati. No one can do it alone…everyone needs a cheering squad. Do you have yours?    

Life is what you make it.

Chaotic? Probably is.

Boring? Most likely.

Happy? Good for you.

We are what we make of our daily interactions, relationships and status updates. We are meaning making machines. What you spend your attention on, how you react and the opinions you form (either accurate or not) all influence how we view our lives. They dictate our days. If you react, you label. Once you label, you enforce through  evidence. The more evidence you gather, the more the label is justified. Which leads to your life.

Your thoughts dictate your life. If I view my life as a roller coaster, it is. What happens to you is all a state of mind.

“But, wait,” you say. “Person A broke my heart. You’re telling me I shouldn’t be mad? It was their fault we broke up! They did this!”

Oh yea? I beg to differ…

My answer to you is:  who were you in the relationship?  

I’m asking you to take a long, hard look at how you not only interact with others, but the thoughts you have (sometimes you don’t even realize, but these thoughts run NON-STOP). Are you in a constant state of mind of drama? Love? Acceptance? Judgment? These thoughts, this voice inside you, fuels the way you speak and interact with others. Take heed. Take mind. And try a new voice today.

My new obsession!! Landon, I heart you. Please divorce your wife and marry me. No offense wifey, you are probably great. But your husband is HOT!

I was told tonight that all men cheat. At first I didn’t believe it. Not ALL mean cheat. I mean seriously, they all think about cheating but not all of them DO it. Right?

Then I come across this…

Affairs Guaranteed

WTF?! Seriously? I mean…SERIOUSLY?

My faith in man has disappeared. Between the Jessie James/Tiger Woods/Kobe Bryant and Larry Kings of the world women today are forced into a sociocultural environment that inadvertently promotes cheating by making it the focus point of media attention and scrutiny. Not to mention the Perez Hilton’s of the world. My faith is faltering. Can you trust the beauty of a monogamous relationship anymore? Or are we all doomed?

I sat today among the flowers. The sunlight bounced off their tiny petals, the wind slowly danced among their stems. I bent down and closed my eyes, taking in their fragrances as if I had never smelt a flower before.

I sat today among the flowers. I thought of simpler times, when life wasn’t so complicated and I was sitting in trees writing my stories, watching the leaves sparkle in the afternoon sun. I thought of what it was like before I knew heartache, grief, anxiety. Remembered what it was like to be barefoot in the grass, jumping in the sprinklers or chasing after the dog. Carefree, joyous and naive.

I sat today among the flowers. And I let them console me.

I just came across this article and had to share with everyone here. Women Need Mentors: How to Find One or Create One in Your Life, is a fantastic article for women in the workplace looking for advice and a helping hand.


Tonight’s the night!

Where I once thought of myself as a Samantha I’m now having seconds thoughts. Perhaps I’m more Charolette? Definitely not a Miranda. And I’m torn about Carrie. Even though she’s the star, she has way too many issues. Between men, finances, infidelity…I just don’t want those problems. I want the money, the glitz and the glam sans emotional instability.