Go forth and conquer…

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I think we can all agree that some of the most satisfying and rewarding moments we can experience in life have come from being supremely focused and committed to the matter at hand, which leads to the ability to fully inhabit that particular moment, which leads to that moment realizing its full potential.  In those moments, as we refuse to be distracted by fear, power and joy blossoms!  We free our figurative wings of the mud that can weigh us down and we can soar the way we’re supposed to!


Happy Monday!!




Do it…

My husband shared this with me yesterday.  It resonated with me, so I wanted to share it with you. Powerful way to start the day, and a brilliant reminder that nothing ever happens if you don’t show up and challenge yourself to fully participate in your life!  

Now go out there and take a bite out of this Sunday…that’s what I’m going to do over here on this cloudy New York morning!

I’m cheering you on!


Thursday in New Haven…

If you saw my nails right now, you’d be pushing me out the door to the nearest salon.  Don’t worry…I have an appointment this afternoon so I won’t embarrass myself when I put them on display later tonight by wrapping them around a microphone.

Before I headed out the door today, I wanted to share this with you:

“Appreciate where you are now, and keep fighting for where you want to be.  You are not a failure until you give up on yourself.  Keep going!

Hard times may hold you down for awhile but they will not last forever, and when all is said and done, you will be able to stand even taller than those who didn’t earn it.

Seriously,  you may not be where you want to be yet, but look how far you’ve come.  Be thankful that you’re not where you used to be.  If you have no other testimony right now, you have this one: “I’m still here trying.”


Thank you, Marcandangel.

And thank you, Elaine Stritch.  When my husband and I saw her at Cafe Carlyle in New York, she was there trying valiantly and often failing to remember her lyrics…but she was up there.  She was doing it, regardless.  Completely exposed, in front of everybody.  And she didn’t let those brutal moments crush her. You can see her living those moments in a place where the stakes as a performer don’t get much higher…the White House.  And what is she singing?  “I’m Still Here”.  Yes, diva!!!






Brisbane morning….

Brisbane morning....

This is the ONLY way to start this beautiful last day in Brisbane…a skinny flat white and this impeccably toasted caramelized mango and coconut bread with the most amazing butter…gonna look at this photo when I’m in the city next month and reminisce while I’m on that elliptical for 3 hours…


Once upon a time in Nashville…

…there was a girl trying to get to a farewell party off the I-40 who got stranded on the highway in a stick shift car that she could barely drive.

And it goes a little something like this:

Back in the day, I got my first professional job at Opryland USA…it was an incredible experience, and I still have friends from the time that I worked there. I heard lots of rich and interesting comments while I was there. Among them:

“You’re kinda pretty for a black girl.”

“I’d like to buy you some grits at the Waffle House.”

“You look really nice. I hope you don’t take this the wrong way, but are you a hooker?”

“I’ll meet you down by the old KKK club house.”

Different kind of chit chat than I was used to coming from Southern California, but then this wasn’t So Cal. All that nonsense aside, I did manage to have a really fantastic time there.

The story:

I had a friend who was leaving our contract early, and his friends were throwing a farewell party for him about 10 miles away from my apartment. My roommate had taken off for another gig and left his car there, which he told me I was welcome to use. I’d never been good at driving a manual car (he tried to teach me and definitely concurred) but as that was my only means of transportation, I decided to put my big girl pants on and go with it.

I got dressed in a nice black skirt suit with my best high heels and got in the car and on my way. It was a straight shot down the 40, and I drove pretty well and was feeling somewhat confident. I arrived at the party location, and noticed that there were just a few cars in the parking lot…it started at 9pm, and I was a fashionable 45 minutes late, so I thought that was odd.   I went inside and when I stepped through the door, I saw chairs on the tables and the wait staff mopping the floor. I asked about the party, and was told that the party location had been moved.

As you can imagine, I was not happy with that news. I called my friend, read him the riot act, and he apologized for not updating me and begged me to still come and say goodbye. New location? His apartment. That was walking distance from mine. Mmmm hmmm.

So back in the car I go. I’m about 2 miles from my exit, when the car stalls out. I coast over to the shoulder of the road and put it in park and try to get it started. Nothing doing. I remember what my friend said about flooding the engine, so I waited there for 20 minutes before trying again. Nothing. I’m sitting there alone in the pitch black night, with big rigs speeding past me and no help in sight. I give it another half hour, and try again. Dead as a door nail.

Decision time: stay in the car all night, or make a run for it.

I decided to run. I prepared for my 2 mile jog (in heels) by arming myself as best I could. I took off my belt and wrapped it around my right hand leaving the buckle exposed, and I took the sharpest key on my chain and clenched it between the index and middle finger of my left hand.

I reviewed my situation. I’m wearing all black, I am black, I’m stuck on a southern highway an hour before midnight in a pitch black night that is sporadically punctuated by the occasional light post and the speeding beams of light from the rigs that pass by close enough for me to feel the wind of their wake.

My adrenaline is at an all time high as I begin to run.

I’m indifferent to the rocks in my shoes, the rips in my hose, the straining of my calf muscles as I run and run and slowly get closer to my exit. Finally, FINALLY, I’m about a ¼ mile away from the promised land and I begin to relax a little and slow down to a walk. That’s when the cab of a semi pulled up in front of me.

I wasn’t comforted to see the confederate flag that was waving from the truck’s antennae. And that discomfort spiked when the driver got out and approached me…besides the tee shirt and baggy jeans he was wearing, he was also sporting a matching flag on the trucker hat that was placed on his oily brown mullet-styled head.

Him: “You alright?”

Me:   “I’m fine! My car broke down a couple miles back, but this is my exit,    

           so I’m good.”

Him: “Well, lemme getcha off this highway-I’ll give ya a ride.”

Me:   “Thanks so much, but I’m ok…I’m almost there and I’ll be fine.”

Him: “Listen…ain’t nothin’ funny gonna happen…I’ll sit on my side, you’ll        

          sit on yer side and I’ll getcha off this stretch. Been hearin’

         ‘bout some girl running down the highway for the last 10 miles, and I

        tole myself if you was still out here by the time I get to ya, I’d do my

          Christian duty and getcha off the road.”


I know it sounds crazy and stupid, and it feels a bit crazy and stupid to admit this, but I got in the cab. I believed him. Confederate flag and all. Yes…I know there were atrocities committed there in the name of Christianity, and God knows I wasn’t ignorant of that, but in that moment, I somehow knew he was alright. And he was as good as his word—he got me off the highway and dropped me off at the gas station across the street from my apartment. Though I did wait until he was gone to head over to my place.    

What a night. I never did make it to the party. And when I got back to the car 45 minutes later (a friend went with me after I dealt with my cuts and abrasions), the stupid thing started right up.

Ooooh weeeee.



Carpe diem…

These are the words that started my day today:


It’s never too late to be who you could have been. It’s a matter of switching gears; never looking back, and BECOMING the person today that you always knew you were capable of being. Entertain every thought, say every word, and make every decision from their point of view. Walk the way they would walk, dress the way they would dress, and spend your free time the way they would spend theirs. Choose the friends they would choose, eat the meals they would eat, and love and appreciate yourself the way they would. These steps MUST come in order for there to be change. There’s no other option, no other way. But since this person is who you REALLY are deep down, this makes this task a bit easier. You just have to stop being who you AREN’T.


I woke up thinking about my husband…he’s waking up every day to work in a grueling environment that relentlessly challenges his mind, body and spirit in ways he’s never experienced before.   Like he told me, he signed up for it, and there is no option, no other way than just to get up and DO IT. Whether you feel like it or not…actually, especially when you don’t feel like it! The amount of effort you give determines the amount of joy you receive. Not really a news flash, is it? It’s LIFE.  

There’s another quote that stays with me: “Most people fail because they sacrifice what they want most for what they want in the moment.”

We are stronger than we think we are. We can do more, endure more, triumph through more than we think we can.

Easy? No. Possible? Yes. Claim and inhabit that uncharted territory. It is the gateway to a more joyful and satisfying life. And it all starts by just getting up and doing it.





Thank you MarcandAngel.com!


Howdy, Stranger…

Nice to see you again! It’s been a minute since I’ve been here.  309,600 of them to be exact. 

Life has definitely been lived in those minutes, hours, days and weeks…what’s that saying about life happening while you’re busy making plans? My father-in-law was diagnosed with prostate cancer and had a heart attack on the table during his surgery. We lost him for a terrifying moment …thank God the doctors got him back and he is doing great–well on the road to recovery. My husband left for Australia to be with him and help him recuperate, and when that went from being short term to long term, I stepped up my hours with my personal chef/event management work in the city. During that time, my own dad was in and out of the hospital with complications from diabetes (also doing well, thank God), but he has since lost 2 brothers and is now the last male sibling in his family. During one of the coldest winters New York has ever seen, I was offered an opportunity to join my husband in Australia and I grabbed it…with the help of some friends, I moved us out of our NYC apartment last December and landed in Brisbane in January to join the cruise ship where I’m currently working.


The winds of change swept through my life in a visceral way these last several months. The business of living and dying played the biggest part of all, and I gotta tell ya, the magnitude of the love and gratitude I feel for my family and friends on both sides of the world can’t really be described.

It was a little daunting to sit down and write this post.   I wasn’t quite sure where to start, what to say or where to go. So I began with a nice Sauvignon Blanc last night, and finished with some Earl Grey this morning. Never underestimate the power of a perfectly timed beverage.

I know these are broad strokes…I’ll be filling in the lines and coloring outside of them as I go on. And I will go on.

As a matter of fact, I’ll be going on in a show called The Bikinis at New Haven’s Long Wharf Theatre in July…yes!!!  This will be the second time around…you may remember that I had my debut at the Goodspeed Opera House with this gorgeous little show the summer before last.

I want you to know I’m grateful for you too. Thank you for being here with me!