I loved everything about this FWB: the topic, the location, the teacher and it’s timing. Olga and I met at a silent disco party a year ago at Gauntlet Gallery. We became friends on FB and would run into each other around the city. She is also the number one person who is always the mutual friend on Tinder;). We reconnected after her travels a year later at the same silent disco party where she agreed to do an FWB.
This topic is near and dear to my heart. I, too, took the risk of leaving my life in NYC in 2012 to travel and relocate to SF to honor my truth and happiness sans job. As Olga said, it wasn’t all unicorns and rainbows but I don’t regret that decision for a minute. The same day as filming this FWB, I attended a Women Catalysts event where Elle Luna was guest speaking about her new book. My main goal for going was to network for SMITH & STARR (stay tuned) not really knowing much about the organization or the speaker. Well, my mind was blown. The Women Catalysts founders truly created an empowering environment and Elle’s message that there are shoulds in our life and then there are musts and we must honor our musts spoke to me on so many levels.
Talk about a “concrete signs” day. This day proved to me that I’m on the right path, things are falling into place and I have honored myself to be true to my musts. My musts include traveling (booked a trip to the Galapagos for Christmas), working for something that I believe in (children, emotional intelligence, innovation, self development, entrepreneurship), sharing my art and creativity (FWB), work/life balance, being part of support networks, yoga/self care, and continuing to develop and nurture my big dreams. Of course, self-doubt, sadness, distraction, fear and confusion all tend to creep in at any moment but I’m so appreciative to have had this day and such a concrete reminder that yes, it’s happening. And remember, for whatever you’re going through right now…as Nicolle says, “It has to work out. There is no other option.”
While staying with my dear friends Robyn and Jacob in Brooklyn, Jacob had to complete the ALS #icebucketchallenge that has been circulating Facebook for a little over two weeks. The challenge started in Boston and I completed it with my friend, Ashley while in Belize. There is a lot of controversy around the Ice Bucket Challenge but I choose to see this act in only a positive light. I’ve personally learned so much about ALS in the last two weeks including finding out that a friend’s good friend is suffering from ALS and doing brilliant work to help spread awareness. This event has involved everyone from my cousin’s elementary school children to the President which really helps me realize the power of social media as well as the goodness people have in their hearts to raise awareness and help improve the quality of lives in others. If you can, please donate.
This week has made me realize the importance of awareness in general. While spending time with Robyn and Jacob, I also learned a lot about the adoption process. They have started the journey to adopt a child. I asked them how I can help since they are the first couple of my friends to go through this process and they responded, awareness and networking. That is how they will find a birthmother. So I am asking you to help Robyn and Jacob to make this process one that is positive, exciting and full of support. Please like their FB page and go on their website to learn more. The one thing I do know for sure is that their child will be the luckiest!!
My friend Ashley is a woman with many talents so when it came to deciding what to teach me there were many options to choose from. She’s an amazing cook and sInce we are now fully into fall (which is bananas), she decided to go with an autumn theme of teaching a variety ways to use pumpkins and squash besides just carving them for decoration. I loved these simple recipes and definitely will be incorporating them in my future Halloween and Thanksgiving parties. Thanks Ashley for sharing your skills in the kitchen!
Lisa, a good friend and coworker, offered to teach me how to make a terrarium. Lisa and I met in winter of 2011 when we both started a new job working with developmentally delayed toddlers. Not only is Lisa an OT, she is also a brilliantly hilarious comedian. She performs regularly in NYC and I try to get to every show I can. Unfortunately, Lisa was not available to teach me on the day we decided, but worry not, her roommate, Linda, offered her time. Watch as I learn how to make a terrarium from Linda who is definitely one of a kind!
Today my friend, Rachel, shows me how to arrange flowers. I was really excited because Rachel is super creative and really knowledgeable. I met Rachel when I first moved to NYC in 2008. She was dating one of my really good friends from camp, Andy, and they have since married. We instantly hit it off and I love hanging with her and of course, her pup, Frida! Check Rachel out at RachelMercier.com to see more of her amazing work as well as her blog at mercierbeaucoup.com
We had a lot of fun filming as well as some technical difficulties as this was my second go at Friendships With Benefits. Along with learning how to make an awesome arrangement, I also learned a lot of lessons for future Friendships With Benefits i.e.-make sure your phone has enough space to film, you can’t directly download videos off youtube and things cannot always be perfect. Enjoy the video and going through the Friendships With Benefits process with me! Thanks so much to Rachel for giving an awesome lesson and Andy for filming and dealing with our technical issues:)