Even though we do not celebrate this holiday in the Bahamas, and in spite of the fact that regardless of the many years that I have lived in the US, my family and I have not really adopted the holiday, it takes nothing away from the fact that I have SO much to be thankful for! And at the end of the day, isn't that what Thanksgiving Day is all about. It's inception was somewhat dubious and should not be forgotten but in it's purest, simplest form, it is a beautiful day where we can all stop for a moment and be thankful for all the blessings we have.
I don't even know where to begin and end in an attempt to make a list of all the things that I am grateful for but let me just go off the top of my head.....
Family Friends Health Happiness Love Opportunity Peace of mind Talent Laughter Cute Shoes:-) Music BBM Joy in my life Hope for the future Options A good education The knowledge that God does answer prayers Second Chances My church/pastor Successful surgery A comfortable bed Passion My upbringing Long eyelashes Sports on TV Smell goods (lotions, perfumes, body mists) A non-flat booty, lol Small feet Books
Ok, ok......as you can see, I could just go on and on but I won't bore you with that lol because the list really is endless when you think about it. So for now I'll just say that I hope you all have a beautiful day spent with those you love:-)
A couple days ago, a good friend of mine (who happens to be wealthy) was in town and we decided to go out for dinner. After hanging out for a bit, we ended up eating at this super fabulous Wolfgang Puck steakhouse named Cut that was right across from the hotel he was staying at. We didn't have reservations or anything and apparently at that place there's usually a two to three week waiting list for reservations, or at least so I was told. I would have no personal knowledge of this since I've never eaten there before.
However, him being who he is, he called down and as soon as they heard his name, magically a table was free:-/ Somehow, I'm thinking if I had called, we would've still be waiting lol. Anyway, so we go to the restaurant and we're shown to our table. Within 5 minutes of being seated, we're already being brought appetizers "on the house". The first was some tuna thingy and the second were these miniature Kobe beef burgers....de-lish!!!!!
We ended up splitting a salad because we knew that our meals were going to be filling. We both ordered steaks and sides of cream spinach and some of the most tasty mac and cheese you've ever had. I have to say that I was a little bit skeptical about ordering mac and cheese at this type of restaurant but Lord was it good!
He had a couple glasses of wine and I had a couple drinks. And that was it, no dessert or anything because we were both waay too full. I don't think I'm going out on a limb to say that it was perhaps the BEST steak I've ever had. My mouth is drooling now just thinking about it. So anyway, the bill comes and I glance at it .....$266!!!! My friend doesn't even flinch, meanwhile I'm sitting there quietly thinking WTH??? Who ate that amount of food and simultaneously, Thank God I don't have to pay for this because I might have to go in the back to wash some dishes lol. But seriously, the appetizers were free, we had one salad between us, two entrees, a couple of drinks each and no dessert. Crazy!
He calmly pulls out some $100 dollar bills and gives them to me to pay and I say "So do you just normally walk around with $100's in your pocket?" to which he replies that he has another friend who's even more wealthy than he his who gives him $20, $30, $50,000 cash every time he sees him just for no reason! Just because they're good friends!!! What??? Please try to picture the incredulous look on my face at this point and time. Why would one rich person give another rich person cash of all things? And why was our appetizer "on the house"? They know he can afford it! And why does he need complimentary champagne in his hotel room? All I could do is shake my head and say, "Must be nice!!"
I can't even begin to imagine a life like that, where cost is a complete non-issue and people just give you expensive, free things all the time. Just seems kinda backwards don't you think? Luckily, I'm not a materialistic person, but I have to say it sure is fun to see how the other half lives every once in a while....
We definitely had a great time but after he paid for my valet, which he insisted on, I jumped in my Chevy Equinox and happily drove back off to reality....truth is, my world ain't too bad either:-)
Over the years, I've dated a wide variety of guys. Those who know me, will know that the number of actual men is not high. I'm not sure why or why not. For some reason, I've just never been attracted to loads and loads of men. Call it picky, call it selective, call it unlucky, who knows? Some of my friends have the ability to find this guy attractive, and that one and the other one, any time, all the time. I would have to say that sometimes I've envied that. I could seriously go years without finding one guy wholly appealing - physically, spiritually, mentally, personality, manners - you know the whole package.
I have a lot of male friends, friends who I can totally see why someone else would absolutely love them and who on paper it would make perfect sense for me to be attracted to them, but maybe there's a faulty mechanism in my brain that only allows me to like one or two guys every 3 or 4 years lol. There was a period of time, between 2002 and 2005 where I only was "involved" with one guy that played tennis (and for those of you who read my blog that know who I'm talking about, please keep it to yourselves:-) and that was only for a couple weeks. THAT's IT! Not another date, not a nothing else. Sad, yes I know:-(
I think I've spent so many of my years traveling and doing the track thing with my whole heart and being that it's just never been a priority. During that time I have dated white guys, black guys, a hispanic guy and in-between guys. At Stanford, my first boyfriend ever was white - the quarterback of the football team - how cliche??!! Let me add quickly though that at that time, fresh off the boat from The Bahamas, I had absolutely NO comprehension of the game of football. Didn't know a quarterback from a running back from a hump back of Notredame. Seriously, no clue. That didn't stop the naysayers from claiming that I thought I was white and was only dating this guy because of his position on the team. If only they had known that a) I don't discriminate lol and b) that for all I knew he was just one of a group of men in similar uniforms who liked to play this game with no rules (in my mind) who just knocked each other down over and over for no apparent reason. By my senior year, thankfully I knew what was going on lol.
I've dated internationally too - a black model from France (worst mistake EVER), a white guy from Germany, an Australian, a Cuban and then my lovely American boys. For one reason or another, I've ended up dating a number of guys that are significantly younger than me. Not sure why. I will say I am not a chaser, so these young men have been the ones who pursued me and since they've been so lovely, what's a girl to do??
I've often wondered what exactly is my kinda guy. I don't really think I have a type per se, but there are certain things that seem to be more prevalent than not in the men I've loved. Tall (well mostly), athletic, intelligent, uber confident, great smiles, charming, funny - you HAVE to have a sense of humor, and they've been high on the handsome scale:-) It's not that I look for that specifically, it's just that these traits seem to be common to them all. However, because of these qualities, these men tend to have more "options" so to speak and a fair number of them have chosen to exercise those options if you know what I mean. Sometimes it's hurt a lot, sometimes not as much. But you just pick yourself up, dust yourself off and move on, knowing that Mr. Right is still out there, right ladies?
I know what I DON'T LIKE - selfishness, rudeness, men that are inconsiderate, who treat their mother's poorly, I can't do the vertically challenged thing - sorry - I'm 5'8 1'2 and when I put on heels, I'm bordering on 6ft so a guy that's also 5'8" or less, probably not gonna work. Unhealthy or unfit men, I don't like them. I love guys that take care of themselves or who workout. They don't have to be athletes as such, just athletic. Poor hygiene is a HUGE turnoff. Can you really get past consistent bad breath? I don't think so lol. Or someone with bad B.O.??? Ewwww! If you did not just finish working out, etc, there's no excuse. The ladies know there's a lot of bonus points out there for a good smelling guy!!! Get your Bath & Body on too please (if you need some help I highly recommend Warm Vanilla body lotion) and a little bit and I did say a little cologne (don't bathe in it). Just can't deny a great smelling guy! (That rhymed, haha...) Anyway, Oh yeah and cut your hair - no shaggy monsters for me (well maybe one time I went there, lol).
Can you have some table manners too? No smacking your lips while you're eating! Know how to use your fork and knife properly. Please don't talk with your mouth just loaded with food. Be kind to your waitstaff. I hate it when people are rude and pushy with the people who serve them at restaurants. Says a lot about a person's character or lack thereof. And can we talk about something other than hip-hop music or popular culture? I need you to know a little about what's going on in the world. Is that too much to ask for?
I know I'm all over the place with this post lol and I'm not sure what prompted the topic. I just know that I know that I like what I like when I see it. Can't predict it, can't explain it. My kinda guy is thoughtful and genuine and adventurous and honest and chivalrous and passionate and silly and intellectual. He's intense but laid-back, he's tough but gentle, he's serious and funny, he can dress up and he can dress down. The older I get, the more I know what I like...And who knows, maybe I've found him already:-) It's possible, but only time will tell.....
Man, it's been about a week since I blogged last. I've been doing some work, having fun, and spending time with people that matter to me. It's been a bit of a whirlwind but I feel as if sometimes everything in your life happens for a reason and you end up in just the right place at just the right time.
I did finally get my cast off on Monday!!! Woohoo!!! I'm SO happy about that! After not being able to put my foot on the ground for 6 weeks, it's amazing how such a relatively small action could bring me that much joy, lol, albeit in a boot. The boot itself makes me feel as if I'm about to walk on the moon but at this point I'd wear anything on my foot as long as I was able to weight bear again. I've been using both crutches for the past few days but today marked the first day where I could use one for the most part.
My scar doesn't look too bad either. It's pretty long, but all things considered, it's healing rather well, at least in my opinion.
I think with some Mederma and cocoa butter, it will hardly be visible by the time all is said and done.
I've been out to dinner a couple times at two great restaurants, one Italian and a steakhouse. On Wednesday, I did something that I've never done before, thanks to the generosity of a good friend of mine. My BFF Peggy and I were treated to a day at a spa. We went to this place called Burke Williams - the Torrance location. We had facials, massages and pedicures and it was AWESOME and I have soft skin and pretty pink toes to prove it:-) I had NO idea that I was missing such luxury and I, Ms. Low Maintenance, will definitely go back at some point.
I saw the movie Precious and now I understand what all the Oscar buzz is about. It was moving and funny and sad and powerful and touching and uplifting and emotional all at once. If you haven't seen it, do yourself a favor and go see it.
I went to the bookstore and bought the Andre Agassi biography and am looking forward to reading it. Add to that a little shopping (bought a new pair of boots and a new purse), and a meeting for a new commercial interior design project that Urban Safari Design will be undertaking and this week has just flown by.
And I can't wait for the next one.....hope you all feel as blessed as I do.
Yesterday marked exactly five weeks since I had my surgery and if all goes according to plan, I should be getting my cast removed on Monday and getting a boot, which I will have to wear for another 6 weeks:-( To say that these weeks have not been trying and frustrating, at times humbling and other times aggravating, would be a great understatement. Anyone who knows me though knows that what I may lack in other areas, I definitely make up for in being able to make the best out of any situation. Maybe it's all my years of jumping and competing but I just seem to have an innate ability to not focus on the negatives and to just maintain a healthy optimism.
That ability has certainly been put to the test in these weeks. I did manage to still keep some portions of the schedule I had planned for myself prior to my injury and just refused to allow for too many moments of self-pity. For all the trouble it's been living in a 3 story apartment, having to go up and down the stairs every day, falling 3 times (twice very badly), I started thinking yesterday about all the blessings that I've also had during this time.
For obvious reasons, you are FORCED to just slow down figuratively and literally, and take a look at your life. I've been ripping and running for the better part of 15 plus years, never slowing down, never really looking around me to truly appreciate all that I've been blessed with. I began compiling in my mind all the things that I've come to realize and appreciate over the past 5 weeks. Here are my top 10 things, in no particular order:
1) Who knew that people were SO helpful?? Being on crutches has allowed me to see the best in people - I've had more doors opened for me, my gas pumped, errands ran, bags carried. If you think everyone around you is cynical, just break a leg or tear a tendon and get on some crutches, lol and you will see the true humanity of complete strangers.
2) I've met some REALLY outstanding people recently, just because I've been able to take the time to do a few more things socially - Events or outings I would have never gone to had I been on my usual busy/hectic training and travel schedule.
3) I've been reading some really good books.
4) I've had the chance to see my parents and my brother far more often than I normally would be able to just because I've had the time to.
5) I'm pretty sure I've caught up on all my beauty rest:-). When you train as hard as we do and travel all the time, your body just is completely over-extended and often exhausted and I am definitely rested lol.
6) I've been able to communicate/stay in touch with my friends a lot more frequently. Instead of just thinking I should call or talk to someone, I've just done it!
7) I think because I've been a pretty healthy person, I've taken for granted the fact that my body functions properly, arms, legs, mind, everything - when you're incapacitated yourself, you actually tend to realize just how many other people are in your same predicament, if not worse. The other day when I wasn't feeling too good because I had fallen, I saw this guy go by on crutches as well and was about to tell myself, yep there's another one just like me....and then I looked more closely and saw that he only had one leg! Whatever I was feeling vanished in an instant because the truth is, in a matter of weeks, I will be able to walk again. Not so for this guy. So....GET OVER IT Jackie!!
8) I've actually learned how to ask for help. I'm still working on this one. I like to be independent and feel that I get things done myself. Plus I hate bothering people, but I've become aware that there are simply times in your life when you just need help. Plain and simple. There are no awards being handed out for taking 30 minutes to get my laundry basket up the stairs myself to the laundry room when I could just as easily ask my roommate for help, particularly when she's told me to ask her for help whenever I need it. (Learned that one the hard way:-/)
9) I don't have to be going at 100miles an hour to be productive. I'm involved in some relatively new work and I've realized that I can be effective right here from my bed. Just have to think outside the box a little and that in and of itself is rewarding and beneficial in the long run.
10) I HAVE GREAT FRIENDS! They have been here for me in every way - in thought, in words and in deeds. And I have really seen that now more clearly than ever.
While I wouldn't want to have to go through this experience again....I have to admit that this cloud has had the most beautiful silver lining and I can't really ask for much more than that!!
I haven't blogged very much lately because I've been pretty busy. Busy trying to get my leg better, busy with my friends, and just busy with the business of life. But last night me and my girls Erica and Peggy took some time out to go to a Halloween party at my boy Marcellus Wiley's house.
At first I could not figure out what to go as, given my crutches and cast. Should I just wear a costume and just hope people could look beyond the visual of me crutching around or should I try to actually incorporate the crutches into my costume in some kind of way. I couldn't think of anything myself so I asked for suggestions on Facebook and a relatively new friend of mine, MarcAnthony, came up with the winning idea. He suggested I go as a "sexy":-/ wounded soldier. What a great idea!!!
I had a camouflage jacket and mini skirt in my closet that I would never wear together in the real world lol, I had a pair of brown Puma boots that I've had for over a year but could never quite figure out why or when to wear them, I had the perfect cap and I had this belt that I'd bought in Germany years ago but hardly ever wore either. Add an ace wrap on my forearm and a bandage to my cheek, along with my cast and crutches and Voila!!.....Wounded soldier! Thanks MarcAnthony!!
Erica went as a sexy doctor and Peggy informed us that she was a fairy princess from the land of Mermaidia.....lol, whatever works right?? We got there at around 10:30 or so and let me tell you Marcellus went 100% full throttle with the Halloween thing. His house was fully decorated, lots of food, lots of drinks, good music and then of course there were the costumes. What can I say about the costumes???? I saw a little of everything pretty much - from scary, to sexy, to scandalous:-/, to clever, to funny, to "no you did NOT"!!!!
I only had one drink of the "witches brew". I figured since I already have a penchant for falling (I've fallen 3 times since I've been on these crutches) when I'm completely sober, I better not get inebriated. My costume turned out to be a hit, I'm happy to report. Everyone kept asking me if I was really injured or not. "Are you hurt for real? Cause if not, man you sure went all out!" I think I heard that at least 50 times, no exaggeration.
We ended up having a really good time and finally left at around 2 something in the morning and the party was still going full force and the host himself was in rare form:-) My poor left leg was exhausted though from all that standing around. Thank goodness for that extra hour of sleep this morning so I could make it to church on time and give thanks to the Man above for the fact that I only have one more week and one day in the cast before I get switched to a boot. Woohoo!!!
Anyway, here are just a few pics from our night of fun! If you click on them, you can see everything a little more clearly/in detail.
Me, Erica (Dr. Chocolate Love) and Peggy
Erica and Peggy
I thought this guy's costume was pretty clever - he was a "Cereal Killer", get it? LOL...