Gratitude Saturday Leap Day!!

OK- first off we should all be grateful for leap day! Why? I don’t know- I guess because it’s a magical extra day- and I believe there’s some sort of legend that woman are encouraged to ask a man to marry them…not that you can’t do it- but society still hasn’t gotten past man on bended knee offering a jewel to his beloved…

OK- we’re done with that because that could be the beginnings of a blog post…

But anyway-

The past few days in NYC it has been extremely windy- let’s set the stage. I was walking across town (I was at Container Store if anyone cares) and as I walked down the street, a piece of metal, slightly larger than a shutter, came twirling from the sky and landed maybe fifteen feet in front of me. There was a bike messenger standing next to me, and we looked at each other-

Did that…


We looked up to see where it came from…

A man who was coming from the opposite direction picked the sheet up and moved it out of the sidewalk path and we all just looked at each other- grinning because we all knew that story could have been so much more than a mere anecdote of the day…

So- I am grateful that I don’t walk very fast….

Tips & Advice: Readers & Authors – The Importance of Fiction (Guest Post by LA)

It’s the next edition of the Tips & Advice – Readers & Authors feature on the This Is My Truth Now blog. If you’re new to this segment, scroll toward…

Tips & Advice: Readers & Authors – The Importance of Fiction (Guest Post by LA)

Hi All!

As you can see, I’m guest blogging for the marvelous Jay Cudney! Please swing over and give it a read! Jay and I became friends via blogging and it morphed into an IRL friendship. If nothing else, as Jay has seen me in person, he might be able to settle the hotly debated question…”does La look like Susan Sarandon…

Cut the cord

Hi. I’m La.

Hi LA. 

I have a problem. I don’t like to admit this, but I’m addicted to cords…. I have boxes and drawers filled with charging apparatus that I’m afraid to get rid of because I just might want to pull out the portable DVD player and give it a go…

I made my February 20/20 goal to get rid of 20 things. Those of you who know me now that I am a ruthless purger: I have no problem going into my closet and pulling our things that I haven’t worn and tossing them into the donate pile. I can go through paperwork and weed out the things that are not necessary. I’m not overly sentimental, so my memories boxes are pretty well contained.


Everyone has an Achilles Heel

And mine is/are cords.

For some reason, I have a tough time getting rid of a cord that charges things. I can’t even identify what these cords belong to, if they still even work…yet they are hidden around my house, like a sugar addict hides candy. I have several stashes of cords…

When I began to go through my apartment, I found many things to toss- twenty items came up quickly. I opened every drawer and cabinet and just took things out.

And then I got to my end table…

I opened the two drawers and there nestled inside were cords and battery chargers…

And this was prime real estate- I didn’t need a step ladder to get to them #shortpeopleproblems…

And I had a lightbulb moment…

I hadn’t opened this draw in a long time…

So I just tossed all the cords into the recycle bin (in large NYC apartment building we have a recycle bin for electronics)

And I didn’t look back…

Instead, I looked for all my other stashes…the box hidden way back on the top shelf of my closet, the little pile in the back of my supply drawer…

And like a crazy woman I just got rid of them all….

How do I feel?

Well, I love that I was able to reorganize things so that my storage space functions better…

But in the back of my mind I have visions of scouring ebay for a charger for the one thing I didn’t think about…

But anyway…

I purged about forty cords, so the actual total of things I dumped this month was more like sixty…

And that I feel good about.

Stay tuned for the 20/20 for March which will be trying 20 new recipes…

Competitive Sleeping

As many of you know, I received a Fitbit for Christmas- the InspireHR.  This device not only tracks my steps, it also tracks by heartrate, and therefore, my sleep patterns.

Now, I get jazzed by numbers, so having all this information at my fingertips is a gold mine! I can open the app at any point and look at my hard data. Contrast and compare. See what’s good and what’s bad. Set goals.

When I first talked about this, many people said that they would be more stressed by wearing a bracelet to sleep, knowing it was tracking you. Many others thought it funny that I was getting competitive about my sleeping pattern. But these things do not stress me out: I do not get stressed by data. I think of hard, cold data as a way to make things better. Because when I see numbers, I automatically see solutions.

Once an analyst, always an analyst…

I have been able to significantly increase my sleep score. I did this by looking at my sleep number in the morning and figuring out what my pattern was the night before. I was able to isolate what things were affecting my sleep positively and negatively. Some people were interested in what I found, so here’s my personal sleep analysis.

The biggest problem I had with getting a good night’s sleep?


The nights I sleep worse are when I have caffeine after 4pm. Period. If I want to have a good night’s sleep my evening beverages must be herbal or decaf.

The next biggest issue:

Not Shutting my brain down before sleep.

What does that mean? Well, for me. I need to start getting my mind and body into sleep mode an hour or so before I actually go to sleep. The following is my perfect routine:

  1. Go through apartment and put away things that have been left out (this usually includes emptying the dishwasher as I run it after dinner)
  2. Pick out outfit for following day (this is usually gym clothes and actual clothes)
  3. Evening ablutions- Wash face and any grooming rituals, and moisturize everything
  4. PJ’s and robe!!
  5. Line a day journal, and I have a separate journal where I list 3 things that made me calm, 3 highlights, and 3 gratitude’s. I also write a word that encapsulates my day. If I had a stressful day I write it out. The act of ridding the thoughts from my mind actually helps
  6. I go over my schedule and write a to do list for the following day. I also write down anything that is on my mind in my planner. Again, getting rid of the angst and putting it on paper clears my head
  7. Check over emails and texts to make sure I didn’t miss anything important
  8. Glass of water
  9. Get into bed
  10. Put a fluffy, heated neck wrap behind my neck
  11. lavender lotion on my feet
  12. Read a designated amount.
  13. The goal is to not wait till the ereader falls on me because I’ve fallen asleep reading. The goal is to put it down before I am that tired. If I start to fall asleep before I am “ready” I will not have a good nights sleep.

I realize this seems crazy. It seems undoable. And sometimes it is. There are nights when I just don’t have the luxury of time to go through this routine. And my sleep suffers. My goal is to do this as often as possible.

One thing I have realized is that you should physically be tired when trying to go to sleep, but your brain can not be tired: your brain/mind must be relaxed. There’s a difference between a tired mind and a relaxed one-and that is the difference between a good night’s sleep and not. A tired brain will keep churning itself over- it will not automatically shut off because there is still too much going around and around. A relaxed brain will allow you to slowly drift off, because it’s prepared.

The last thing I noticed was that I need to keep to a consistent bedtime and wake time every day. I fall asleep between 1130 and 12 every night, and I wake between 630 and 7 every morning. My keeping to a similar routine every day, by body has formed a natural pattern.

These are the things that I noticed about my sleep and my habits. My solutions might not work for others, but they do work for me. I have the proof.

If your sleep is not as restful as you would like it to be, try to figure out why: what are you doing that disturbs you from getting qualtiy shut eye?

I know- all you non planners out there are shaking your heads. You can’t grasp that I plan my sleep… I get that- but I’m the same organized nut job when I’m asleep as when I’m awake…

I wanted to sleep better. I figured out how to make that happen. You do what’s important to you…Sleep was important to me, so I figured out a way to make it better.


What do you want to change for the better?

Disclaimer: I am recieving no compensation from Fitbit for mentioning them today. The device was gifted to me by my daughter and she used her own funds to purchase it. My familty and I have no affiliation with Fitbit or any subsidieries. All opinions are my own.

I’m Marrying Who?

Parenting and marriage meet in a sort of bizarre way: sometimes we assume that our mate is going to be like our parent. And sometimes our mate ends up being like our parent.

Crazy, right?

A few people commented the other day that they felt their partners really thought they were marrying someone just like their Mother. What does that mean? It means that perhaps a man thought that because his Mom did things a certain way, for example, took complete control of all child rearing duties, that his new wife would take on the exact same responsibilities. So when the couple had children, the man was shocked to find out that his wife wanted to share parental responsibilities.

What do you mean? the guy thinks. The wife is supposed to do the kid stuff. My Father didn’t change diapers and I’m certainly not changing diapers…

And then the trouble starts.

Why do we often think that all relationships are the same? Why do we assume the power dynamic will be exactly how our parent’s was?

Then you have the other side of the coin; people who marry someone without realizing how many traits they share with their parent. And it isn’t always the good traits. I know this first hand.

It took me years after my divorce to realize that I had married someone with some of  the same bad traits as my Mother. I’m guessing my rationale was that if your parent is supposed to love you the most, you need to find someone who treats you the same way. And while that theory is somewhat sound, the reality is that even parents with the best intentions don’t always do the right things. As we know from yesterday, the parent child relationship is often a rocky path, and sometimes only maturity will make you see how things really were.

Why do we often do this? I have no idea. But it sure makes me wish I studied more psychology. I’m hoping Deb jumps in here with some sociological explanation as to we unconsciously seek out people like our parents.

Today I am battling a bit of a cold- I think the stress of Saturday manifested itself deep in my sinus cavities. So this is all you get from me today.

But, as always, think about your relationships: Did you seek out a partner like one (or a combo) of your parents? Were they good traits or bad traits?


Did you expect that your partner would act just like for parent did?

Write my blog for me please:

The Comment

People often tell me that I look like Susan Sarandon. I don’t thing that I do, and I don’t think she is particularly attractive, so I don’t really like when say that. I do not consider it a compliment.

My Mother, Sister and Niece were over the other day. They were recounting a story about my Mother having told a waitress that she looked like Jennifer Hudson.


The ensuing conversation went someting like this:

Me: I know that you meant it as a compliment, but maybe the woman doesn’t think Jennifer Hudson is attractive.

Mother: But she is.

Me: But maybe she doesn’t think so. It might not be a compliment to her.

Mother: of course it is. Everyone wants to be told they look nice.

Which then evolved into me being crazy, the whole world has gotten ridiculous if you can’t give someone a compliment.

Me: But she might not, and however you look at it you’re in a superior position as the customer and she just has to laugh at everything you say because her tip is dependent on how much you like her. You should never put someone in that position.
Mother: Well I don’t consider myself superior (now consider this said in a negative, whiny, superior tone)

Mother: Well (imagine a really haughty tone) I don’t consider myself superior to her

Me (or my sister- I don’t remember at this point) But you are superior in that she is serving you. Her tip, therefore her livelihood depends on what you think of her service. Just like why a superior at work shouldn’t tell an underling that they look nice. It’s a power imbalance. (who knew we’d end up talking power balances again)

This then evolved into a conversation about workplaces. I having been the only woman in the room who worked  as a female executive in a male dominated field said that I did not like when men at work would tell me that I looked nice.

My mother responded: Of course you liked it when people told you that you looked nice at work…

Let’s just say that my voice is hoarse right now from the amount of yelling I did. I stood there telling my Mother about what it felt like to be one of the only female executives on a floor full of men- open cubicle. How it was not how I wanted to be viewed. I wanted to be respected for my intellience, not my legs…

To which she recounted a story about how she had to once train a man who was going to make more money than she did.

So- I was emotionally spent, and relating a story about the topic at hand. And my Mother had to one up me with the one story she had about her 1 year stint in corporate America, which didn’t have anything to do with the topic.

And…my Husband is not usually one to notice things (seriously- I rearranged something in my living room a few weeks ago and he didn’t notice till my daughter came home) so when my Husband said:

There you were, spilling your guts out about how it felt to be on the trading floor in the 80s ad 90s, and she didn’t even say that she was sorry that you had to deal with all that. She showed no empathy at all. She had to counter you and bring the conversation back to herself.

Mind. Blown.

Because I am so used to a lack of empathy or warmth or understanding from my Mother, that it doesn’t dawn on me that she should be empathetic….

Which brings me to some of my own personality traits: lack of empathy and a certain coldness.

When you have been raised by an emotionally distant, controlling, narcissistic parent, how many of those traits do you retain yourself?

And when you have grown up with little warmth and empathy, you begin to think that you don’t deserve any: you begin to think that you are not worthy of it…

So- to all of you who say that kids are resilient- I would rethink that thought.

To those of you who think that parenting doesn’t matter: I would rethink that thought.

We are the products of our parents actions. Period. What you do and say, how you act begets the person that you become.

We all make parenting mistakes.


Making mistakes is fine. But we must own the mistakes we make with our children. When your adult child says that the way that the parent handled something, or did, had a negative impact, as a parent you must at least think about what they said.

I have told my Mother countless times that the way that she did things was bad for my mental health.

But she still insists that her course of action was correct. She can not admit that she may have not handled something in the best way possible. I am 55 and she is 79, and she will not listen to what I have to say as a rational adult.

When my daughter came home last weekend, she said that distance has made her realize something about my parenting that was not really good for her. I admit that I was hurt, sad and angry- at first. Then, when I got over my initial feelings I began to think about what she said, how it was impacting her, and I thought of ways to actively change. My daughter wasn’t telling me that I was a bad parent- she was telling me her true feelings about certain things.

Why would you not actively listen to what your child is saying to you?

My Mother is not happy that she and I do not have a particularly close relationship. I understand that- because I am not so happy about that either. But her unwillingness to even think about what I say to her is hard to deal with. I leave an afternoon with my Mother emotionally drained and sad. My sleep numbers, which had been really good, plummeted on Saturday night because I was so upset. Two days later I am still not great…

When someone tells you how they feel because of something you said or did, you have two trains of thoughts: you can cling to your belief that you did nothing wrong, or you can think about what the other person said, put yourself in their shoes.

It all depends on what is more important: being right, or having a relationship with that person.


Highlights of the week that Was 2/23/20

Gratitude Saturday 02/22/20

Look at today’s date… you know I love symmetry…

This was a pretty good week- the worst thing that happened to me was that my hair looked awesome yesterday but then I had to put on a hat because I was cold… thus ruining the effect of my good blow out…

On another note- I have one of those five year journals- the same thing bothering me a year ago is still bothering me today- so this week I’m taking care of that situation…

But anyway…

My sister and niece came to the tri state area this week. I was supposed to see them the other day but my niece came down with the flu. Yesterday her fever broke so finally I get to see them today!

I am grateful that my niece is feeling better and we finally get to have an outing!!


Mighty Morphin Power Holders

Have you ever tried an activity because your partner loves it?

My guess is at some point, we have all done this. We love our partner, we want to be a part of their lives, and we want to be a part of something they love. That seems fair and reasonable. One day a week you go bowling with your partner, one day a week they go dancing with you, and you live happily ever after…

But what if one person joins every activity their partner enjoys, but there is no quid quo pro?

Should there be a balance of power when it comes to free time activities?

Think about your free time, and by free time I mean the time when you are not working, taking care of parents/children, or taking care of the house. (unless gardening or decorating are actual hobbies):

With the time that is left over- what do you do? What percent is spent with your partner? With partner time, was the activity chosen by you, your partner, or is it something that you both love equally?

If you are in a relationship, who is making the “free time” decisions?

I admit- I plan the majority of our social lives, so the balance definitely tips towards me: I read about new restaurants and activities and such. I keep a running bucket list of places and activities that I want to try.


When I look at the list I think of which things my husband will love (cider tasting or archery) and which ones he will not love (embroidery workshop or lecture on flower arranging) If I take him to something he might be so-so about (documentaries or botanic garden), I include really good food. My husband will do anything if outstanding food comes into play…If we are going to a movie or the theater, I take him to the things I think he will enjoy, and save the other things for my daughter, mother, friends or I go myself.

Technically we are doing things I love, but I try to make the experience somewhat enjoyable for him.

But what if you don’t love your partners choice of activities?

What if you are constantly doing what your partner wants, but never what you want?

Have you “learned” to love what your partner loves?

Does your partner try to “love” the activities that you do?

What is your free time power balance?

Do you wish the free time power balance was different?

Assume that your you have a completely free day on Saturday with no responsibities:

What is your perfect day?

What is your partner’s perfect day?

Now what’s the Venn diagram…how much do you overlap?




Recently my Husband was out with a friend of his. They were talking about a party that we all were invited to. His friend asked if I would be attending the party and my Husband responded “No”. Husband went on to explain that I really don’t like social gatherings of more than six or eight people and would rather bang my head against a wall instead of going to a party.

His friend was surprised. His friend exclaimed- “But- when we were at that wedding, LA was the life of the party. She was dancing all night, and she commanded our table with stories and jokes. She was the life of the party!”

Now- life of the party is something that is never going to make it to my About page. I am the antithesis of life of the party- for the most part…

Extraverted introvert is what some call it. Also known as ambivert. I am mainly happy sitting on the sidelines during a social event. Actually, I am mainly absent during a social event. But on the rare occasions that I need to attend something large, I do have the ability to be “on”.

You’ll see me putting my right foot in and my left one out. You’ll see me wearing silly glasses at the photo booth. You’ll see me telling bawdy stories at my assigned table. That is me. Sort of…

If one were to meet me at an event, you would think (like my Husband’s friend) that I love the nightlife and love to boogie…

Am I a bait and switcher?

Some of my blog friends stated that they can be on the spectrum for any number of things. While maybe they don’t dress up and wear make up every day, they might love to do it on the weekends. Or they will occasionally think that a bowling outing is fun, but that doesn’t mean they want to join a league. They can be different people at different times, but all are authentically them.

We’re allowed to be different things on different days. I can choose to be “on” at an event even though that is not my “normal” personality. We are allowed to explore all aspects of our personalities and that is fine. As long as we show all these sides to our potential mates, it is OK.

The problem is when you deliberately go out of your way to be something that you are not.

My Husband knew at the beginning of our friendship (because we were friends for years) that I need a lot of quiet reflective time (he may not always give me that time, but that’s a whole other blog). He knows that it takes a lot for me to me “ON”, which is our word for when I am 100% personality and 0% reflective. He also knows that the moments when I am ON are few and far between…that’s why we term it ON, because it’s like I flip a little switch inside my brain and I am my alternate self…

Am I a chameleon? Am I changing my colors to fit in at a certain thing?

Maybe. Survival instinct tells us that we must blend in in order to survive. You could say that I am blending into an environment that is supposed to be fun and boisterous. I am doing what I can to survive the party…

Do we make the best of situations that we may not like?

Yup- most of us do at some point or another. We squeeze the lemons to the best of our abilities.

But is trying to fit in at a certain event a bait and switch?

I think it comes down to intention and expectation. If your intention is to try to fool someone into thinking that you are a different sort of person, then it is bad. If your intention is just to make the most our of a given situation, then I think it’s OK.

And with the make up and bowling examples- it’s OK to enjoy something 50% or 25% of the time. That doesn’t make you bad, or indecisive, or a bait and switcher or a chameleon. It just makes you interesting (assuming you partner or potential partner sees all sides)

As with everything, examine your intention, and ask yourself what the expectation is. Then be yourself…