Today is a Big Day?

Sunday, January 23, 2011

I am not a fan of football.   

I love beer, can sit through a game and follow it, but to call me a “fan” would just be wrong.  I’m not a real sports person in general. 

At my first Dodger game, my boyfriend wanted to make sure I was taken care of with alcohol and food.  It was very sweet, but I responded with, “I’m fine.  I love football….I mean, baseball.”  At that point in our relationship, he knew he should probably not waste his efforts in trying to create a sports fan out of me.

As most of the waking world knows, this season has been incredible for the JETS.  It has been an exciting ride (so I hear) and I am always tuned in during the second half of the 4th quarter.  I make sure to be very supportive and constantly reiterate how much I love Rex Ryan.

                                    (Image taken from
This morning, while eating breakfast with my lifelong JETS fan boyfriend, I said with a confident smile on my face, “So wow, today is a big day!” Proud of my sports-related remark of support, I took a nice, big bite of my bagel.  While I was happily chewing, I looked up to see a very disappointed face.  

“A big day?.....This is much more than a big day! This is better than Christmas.  The JETS haven’t won this game since 1969!”

So oops.  Now I know that I need to work on providing a much more enthusiastic, creative phrase when there is a MASSIVE, COLOSSAL game on.  



                                             (Image taken from:

I do love Fireman Ed too.

Oh Amsterdam, I Love You

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Thank you, Amsterdam, for being so wonderful.  Your museums are divine, your food is heavenly, your pastries are the reason I can no longer zip my pants, your beauty is magical and the Dutch are magnificent.

The Dutch culture absolutely intrigues me.  All day long, bikes fly by with riders en route to work, or home, or actually, going anywhere.  The bike lane in Amsterdam is much more saturated than the streets with cars.  I mean, there is no comparison.

I have trouble riding my bike more than like two miles (and let's not even get into how ridiculously slow I am riding uphill); these amazing people ride their bikes EVERYWHERE.  Not only are they pedaling with heels, skirts and suits, but they carry things too! I will never forget watching this woman in a long skirt and heels holding one hand behind her, while she balanced a suitcase on the back of her seat.  I was so jealous.  I can barely balance myself. 

You can walk in the street and never once make eye contact with anyone.  Unlike the United States and the obsession we, as a culture, have with celebrities and gossip, they live with their eyes straight ahead.  Rarely was anyone looking around at anyone else. 

We were lucky enough to stumble upon an awesome restaurant server who kindly took a moment to let us know of a local spot to enjoy.  He gave us directions to a bar, Zoite.  We made it there within 10 minutes of saying, “thank you,” and were so grateful we asked him.

Not only did this lovely, quaint bar have a full alcohol menu carrying a spectrum of Dutch beers, but the bar food included a giant block of cheese with freshly baked bread.  YUM.  We ordered like five.

The waitress was unbelievably kind and walked us through each beer we tried.  Everywhere we went, we felt right at home and were able to speak English to just about everyone.

The beauty of the city is indescribable in words.  It is not an exaggeration when Amsterdam is dubbed, “the Venice of North.”  The canals take your breath away, and the charm of the architecture, and old boats and bikes will take you back in time. When you walk along the canals at night, all you hear is silent air with a faint sound of water moving in the canals.  The lights from the apartments shine onto the water, and the reflection is mesmerizing.  It is true bliss.

There is much to do as well.  You can visit the Anne Frank house and see her famous writing.  I must have stared at the journal for hours.

The flower mart will take you on a beautiful path of flower vendors and is the biggest in the world.  If you want to see prostitution out in the open, take a stroll anytime down the streets with a beaming red light.  The ladies will be waiting for you behind a clear, glass wall.

Vondelpark creates a peaceful presence in your mind that will remain in your memory forever.  The serenity and natural beauty of the park will make your thinking stop (finally).  Nothing else matters when you see the reflection of the trees on the wide, open lake. 

The Heineken museum was rated the best tourist attraction many years in a row; this museum is a true experience. There is a beer tasting, a walk through the original brewery, a ride, and then being treated to two, fresh and refreshing Heineken beers in a bar setting with other tourists.  

You can enjoy the Rijksmuseum which takes you on an incredible journey through Dutch history, and then take a few hours to explore the mind-blowing artistic experience the Van Gogh museum has to offer.

Although people may disagree with our choice to go in winter, I must say, it was very special.  The Christmas markets wrap you in warmth and actually give you that nostalgic holiday feeling that I’m sure many of us miss as we get caught up in life.  That’s the best way I can describe it.  Maybe Amsterdam is my version of the North Pole.  

I also visited in the summer three years ago, and it was wonderful to go outside without wearing ten layers.  However, I would still recommend experiencing Amsterdam during Christmas.  It was extraordinary.

If you get an opportunity to take a trip to Europe, I absolutely suggest making a stop in Amsterdam.  Whether you're looking to party with friends, or relax on an extremely romantic getaway, this special city absolutely cannot disappoint any traveler. 

Welcome 2011!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

I welcome 2011 with open arms! It feels like a breath of fresh air.

It is time to start over; the New Year is our clean slate.   

Wherever we leave off (pretty much before the holidays), we can launch ourselves into full motivation mode come January 1st each year (or maybe January 3rd).

We can live with more audacity and passion than we had last year, work with more intensity, take risks that we half-heartedly attempted this year, continue projects that we left incomplete, recognize our faults and perfect them into our strengths….

There is no limit to what you can think about for yourself.  It’s actually a fun brainstorm that can lead you somewhere you’ve always wanted to be literally,

or figuratively.

So give yourself the gift of goal-setting for 2011.  Take some time to reflect on the good, bad and the ugly of 2010 and see how you can turn this new knowledge into something positive for your future.  

No one is too young or old to do this, and studies have shown that the best way to go about this is to think “realistically.” We are not going to change overnight, so set goals that you know you can accomplish if you really put your mind to it. 

One of my goals for 2010 (which I will continue in 2011) was to be a bargain-hunter and not buy anything at full price. 

I stuck to this goal, and it is evident with the story behind my New Year’s Eve outfit.  I wanted to buy something new, so I brought some clothes I haven’t worn in over 2 years into a vintage shop, ended up selling them, and was able to use that money to buy an exquisite purple, silk,  Diane Von Furstenberg top (vintage) with a gorgeous sterling silver fringe necklace (vintage). 

A goal can take you anywhere.  Who knew that my commitment to finding a great deal would eventually get me a paying writing job (another goal I set for 2010)?

In November, I was hired as a writer/editor for a bargain-hunter online fashion magazine. 

So grab a pen and a pad, and happy daydreaming!