An Evening with the Kardashians

Last night, I played the part of West Coast Correspondent for Fab Over Forty. My friend, Kari couldn't fly out from Minnesota for the unveiling of Redbook's first family cover featuring the beautiful Kardashians, so she sent her friend who is over forty, and dare I say, fabulous: ME!

A little after I got there, I ran into a blogging friend (also fabulous and over forty) who was reporting from the red carpet, too. Here I am with SweatpantsMom.

[caption id="attachment_776" align="alignnone" width="255" caption="Together, we're 90!"][/caption]

SIDEBAR: I have to tell you... one of my little girl dreams was to be a reporter on the red carpet, chatting with celebrities about their movies, shows, and lives. As fun as it is to get to do these things, waiting on behind the ropes of  red carpets for hours while other reporters and writers shove for space is not so much fun. But that doesn't take away from the actual doing of the dream... especially when the stars arrive and all the fun starts!

I teetered atop a small ladder for a few shots, got to ask Kris ONE question for Fab Over Forty, took some video of other reporters asking Kim a few questions, and as quickly as it started, the red carpet craziness was over.

We all moved into the reception area and enjoyed appetizers, cosmos, and cupcakes. While we were noshing and swilling, a large version of the May edition of the Redbook cover was unveiled. Kris said a few words about how wonderful it was to be the mother of her lovely daughters and how happy she was to have the pictures, including some with Mason, to keep forever.

Sweet little Mason tried to eat the microphone.

Here's the enlarged cover signed by all the Kardashian ladies:

Then, I shoved a couple of cupcakes into my purse, grabbed my swag bag, and drove back home.

That was my evening with the Kardashians.

It was all very glamorous.

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Plant Your Own Garden

It's been a tough day. One that I'm glad to see the sun setting on.

At one point, I was in my old neighborhood visitng a friend. The gold rays of the afternoon cast down on the canyon along a road I used to take multiple times a day. It all seemed so familiar.

Including the feeling of aloneness.

I haven't felt that feeling for a long time. But today... today I was reminded of it. For a brief, haunting moment.

I'm realizing that even at forty, I am very naive about people.

But some people are still true to who I thought they were. Back when I used to live in that neighborhood, I spent many long nights reading the words of a beautiful blogger that I now have the honor of calling my friend.

Today she posted this.

And everything else I was going to write flew away.

Because that was exactly what I wanted to say.

Hikers in the Mist

Every morning, we wake before sunrise, pull back the drapes, and admire the serene landscape. It's lush in a way that reminds the soul that even in the harshest of environments, beauty can thrive.

The morning routine is simple: Suit up in a few layers, put on your trail runners, grab your water bottle and room key, and vamonos! The layers keep us warm in the early morning chill as we cross the ranch to meet our group.

By the time we arrive, our bodies are beginning to warm up from the inside out. I fill one jacket pocket with almonds, the other with tissue. We grab some fruit and follow the hike shepherds out past the vineyards.

The pace is a quick clip out in front, and following the leader can be a bit challenging when we're still yawning. But soon we are invigorated and wide awake.

Although we all start at the same spot, all hikes vary in almost every way: difficulty, terrain, vistas. Talking to staff members about skill level and ability will give each hiker a good idea about which trail to take. Even when hikers fall back on a hike, the shepherds are always there to make sure no one is left behind or lost.

Once we conquer our mountains, we return to the vineyards for a stretch. Shepherds guide us through a series of stretches and then send us off for the day. Most hikes end by the time the old bell clangs and clamors, calling us to nourish our bodies.

We walk towards our breakfasts, knowing we earned every morsel!

This week, I am a forever grateful hosted guest of Rancho La Puerta in Tecate, Mexico.

Meditation Starts with me

meditate (med' i-tait) verb

  1. To think deeply
  2. To spend short, regular periods in deep thought
  3. To think intently, and at length, especially for spiritual purposes

I've spent a lot of time in deep, contemplative thought this week. I've thought about family and what that means. I've thought about writing and where I'm going with my stories. I've thought about the relationships in my life, past and present, and how they have helped form who I am.

I also reflected on my part in any of the difficult situations in my life this year.

I owned up to my failures, but I didn't take more of the blame than my own share. That's a big deal for me. I used to take all the blame and try to fix things. Later, I'd feel resentful and blow up at the people in my life. But they weren't at fault if I allowed myself to be in a situation that was not honoring me or my path. So for me to only take responsibility for my part meant a lot of soul searching meditation.

It's been a long, cathartic week.

It's been good, though.

It started off with dinner with my almost ex-husband. He and I and The Sugar Babies went to one of our favorite restaurants as a family. We still are a family... just one in which mom and dad are no longer married. It was... nice. A little weird at first, but nice to know that our kids will still have that family time they need, sitting together with their parents, enjoying a meal together.

Yes, I'm still going through with the divorce.

Then there was the picnic with my mom. We haven't spoken to each other for the last couple of months. That's not unusual for us. We blow up. We don't speak. Then, after a while, we speak again. This time, I called first. That came after my oldest kid threw a mirror up in my face, metaphorically. My second oldest and I have a similar relationship to that of mine and my moms. We're hot blooded in our family... what can I say?Anyway, my daughter "sweetly" (not) asked me why I thought her sister would behave any differently towards me if I wasn't forgiving my own mom.

Damn. She was right.

Professionally, I spent some time ironing out issues with someone I work with. I felt that I wasn't being honored and I stood up for myself. Again, another big deal for me. We had a long phone call where we talked through some miscommunications. We listened to each other and understood where each other was coming from, not just in business but in our personal lives. We are both single moms. We both have a lot on our plates. Talking helped heal any misunderstandings without anyone feeling like they lost something.

Tomorrow, I leave for Mexico. I'll be at Rancho La Puerta for the week (and I'll tell you all about that wonderful place tomorrow). I'll be doing a lot more meditating, but I'll also be working on the next adventures in my life. There are spa treatments, cooking classes, and hammocks waiting for our group.

There will also be time to  sit quietly... to think intently... and to dream.