A Sweet Dream: Introducing Cookie Jars Couture!

June 12, 2013 at 4:33 pm | Posted in Career Moves, Friends Then and Now | Leave a comment

When I was younger, I was always very focused on the future. I knew what I liked to do but I didn’t know how it would play out. But I did know that I would be going to college. I thought about college a lot. But not everyone is like me. Not everyone goes on college tours, does their research. Some people just do whatever their best friend does. Even smart, talented people.

So that’s how I ended up at college with my best friend. She just figured whatever worked for me would work for her. So we broke the rules. I lived with my best friend my freshman year of school, and it was awesome.

But before we went, we had to coordinate. Our dorm room wasn’t going to look like your average dorm room. We bought the same sky blue Wamsutta comforters and she made these beautiful picture frames for our walls. We had a white curtain connecting our closets and white Christmas lights on the windows. We were going to be classy ladies.

So when she told me she was going to start a business that would call on her strengths in decorative arts, I was not surprised. This was her calling. Having worked in the catering business as long as I have known her, she found an untapped market. She was going to create custom cookie jars — party favors and gifts for all occasions.

cookiejarsAnd so Cookie Jars Couture was born. I thought this was an awesome idea and see a lot of potential for growth. As part of her 30th birthday celebration she is launching this new venture and I couldn’t be more excited for her. As the person who decorated my wedding cake and spent countless hours doing my hair and makeup growing up, I know she will do well with this.

It is a sweet dream that she has worked hard to make a reality, and I can’t wait to see what great things come of it.

So with this, I am pleased to announce the launch of Cookie Jars Couture. Check it out today for your next party! http://cookiejarscouture.com/

cookies

Our Cousin Vinny

June 4, 2013 at 8:53 am | Posted in Friends Then and Now | 1 Comment

In this day and age, it seems there are few things that can stop a person in their tracks.  But there are some things, and one of those things is the sudden loss of an old friend.

In the midst of the craziness that consumed my life last week, I received the terrible news.  A childhood friend of mine had passed away suddenly and unexpectedly.  This terrible reality stopped me in my tracks.  I was going a thousand miles per hour to pack up my home when I was hit with this terrible dose of reality.

Though I hadn’t seen him in a long time, I had recently been posting photos of him, thinking of him.  While he certainly had closer friends and family, I couldn’t help but feel a part of me die along with him.

There was a time when I wanted to break free from everything that I had known.  I didn’t want my hometown, the people I grew up with, to define me.  I needed to stand my own ground, be my own person.  I wasn’t in touch with people for a few years, and I know people lose touch, but not me.  I don’t forget. I don’t leave people behind.  In recent years, I’ve been reconnecting with many of these people because they are a part of who I am and the person I have and will become.  It is undeniable the impact my childhood friends had on me and that includes Vinny.  I grew up in a close knit community.  My classmates were my friends and my family.

Vinny was a smart, fun-loving guy.  I never knew him to have any enemies or problems with anyone.  I would follow his adventures online — how he moved out to the west coast, how he traveled the world.  It seemed he had a lot going for him.  He loved his family and his friends.  I found photos of us from nursery school and more from middle school, high school and from college breaks.  He was at my Bat-Mitzvah, my sweet 16.  He was always there, ready for a laugh, ready to enjoy life.

And just like that, he’s gone, and it just doesn’t seem right.  I can’t erase the image from my mind of his family following his casket down the aisle at the church.  I can’t erase the image of his best friends serving as pallbearers.  I know these best friends well, too, and hurt for them, too.  I can’t understand how this happened. It just doesn’t seem real.

But I know Vinny.  My cousin Vinny. Our cousin Vinny.  A friend to everyone, someone who lived the hell out of life, wouldn’t want everyone to stop living.  Vinny would want us to live our lives with joy.  Vinny would want us to go on.

And we will.  Somehow, we will.  But we will do it with his memory with us forever.  His footprints side by side with our own.  We will carry his memory through the journeys of our lives.  Through us, he will live on.

We love you Vinny.

Learning How to Argue Effectively

May 5, 2013 at 11:33 am | Posted in Family Ties, Friends Then and Now, Relationship Woes | 1 Comment
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Right about now, any of my good friends who are reading this are probably laughing at the subject of this post, and for good reason.  I’ve never been one to hide or hold back my emotions, no matter what the setting.  The only way I know how to not burst out with emotion when something happens, is to leave the situation.  I have gotten crap for both approaches.  My friends would likely prefer that I just suck it up, that I just not take it personally, so we could just move on.  That’s something I haven’t learned yet.  I can take a joke, but the moment I feel I have been disrespected, a switch goes off and it is on.

So clearly I have some growing to do in this area, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t learned anything from my experiences.

I have learned that it’s okay to go to bed angry.  I’ve always been told the opposite, but I often find that if I go to bed angry, things are usually better in the morning.  Maybe I was arguing because I was tired or drunk. Maybe we’re just talking in circles getting nowhere.  Whatever the situation a good night’s sleep helps me find clarity.

I have learned to try to see things from the other person’s perspective, even when I feel I’m not being heard.  If I take a step back and see it from their perspective beforehand, it may keep a fight from starting.

I have learned that most arguments are stress related.  It’s very easy to take things out on the people closest to you.  Relationships alone are hard, and when things in life are not going smoothly or as planned, arguments can happen.

I’ve learned that anger is blinding.  When you are angry, you say things you don’t mean.  You say things to hurt.  You say them because you hurt.  Maybe you aren’t even really angry.  Maybe you are just hurt, and you want that other person to feel how hurt you are.

So while I’ve learned some things, I haven’t quite mastered the art of arguing effectively, arguing to resolution.  But maybe that’s not the point.  I’m not a lawyer, but I will continue to have arguments, I know.  But if I can take a pause, maybe I can thwart a couple of arguments along the way.

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