gratitude-a-thon day 857:boz


Seems I’ve been on some kind of personal oldies tour this week (maybe this happens when you’re old?) Friends surprised me with a birthday gift of tickets to Boz Scaggs last night (yes, my birthday was in January, but isn’t a gift you get months later even better?!)

Anyway, I was sort of excited because I get excited watching the guys who drum on plastic containers, but I hadn’t remembered all of the great songs that were his. BOOM, at 71 he killed it. A true musician with an amazing band. The tour could be called “Songs from when you didn’t have wrinkles.”

Damn, live music is transformative. And the stuff from your youth brings you right back there. Major gratitude to Boz, and Georgia, and It’s Over, and What Can I Say and Harborlights, and Lido, and Look What You’ve Done to Me, and We’re All Alone, and Lowdown, and Tim and Joanna!

gratitude-a-thon day 856: i love new york


I love Boston. I do. It’s been my home for more years than I’d like to admit I’ve been living, let alone living HERE.

But New York.

We usually hit New York at least once a year, but for a variety of reasons, we have not been there in maybe three. Peter Christmas gifted me with tickets to Billy Joel at Madison Square Garden, and so we had to go this past weekend.

And I was instantly reminded how much I love New York (is this he reason that ad campaign was so legendary, perhaps).

If A.D.D. and optimism and beauty and sadness and majesty and confidence and wit and charm and grit all got married and had a baby, it would be New York.

Every story is happening in that city. As I always like to say, “You can get anything in New York, and if you walk to the next block, you can get it cheaper.”

We did a lot of fun stuff, including seeing Billy at MSG, visiting the 911 Memorial, which is stunning, and very emotional. Last minute, we got tickets to the Carole King musical Beautiful, which was a super fun blast from the past, we ate a lot of food. (A lot, lot of food), and walked a lot of miles. (A lot, lot of miles.) There’s so much to see in New York, you walk around and don’t even notice you’re walking. We ran into a Bernie Sanders parade that really got me. There was so much passion for Bernie marching up Lafayette, you had to get swept up in it. I hate to say it, but sadly, I can’t really imagine a parade like this for Hillary, even though I’m voting for her (oh, the conflict within…..) We stayed in a super cool brand new hotel called 11 Howard in Soho, which was fabulous. We saw our good friend Lily, who just transferred to NYU and who showed us around her new campus. Of course we shopped, and visited one of my top stores ever in my list of shopping meccas–ABC Carpet. If I were a store, I would be that store. And did I mention we walked? Um, yeah, just ask my feet.

We love you, Lily!

Peter and I will always be grateful for Manhattan because it’s where we met. But there are as many more reasons to love it as there are people jammed into all those buildings. And I do.


gratitude-a-thon day 855: kindness


There are some days that are shit. Plain and simple. But one person smiles unexpectedly, or lets you have the parking spot, or the dry cleaner thanks you for your business in a quite sincere manner, and BOOM, you feel a softening in your soul, your personal sunshine has been restored. This is the supersonic power of kindness.

Thing is, kindness doesn’t have to be Empire State Building sized to have an effect. The smallest act can work like a train bounding down the tracks. And kindness doesn’t mean that you have to give over your power, or your tiara, you can have both, and in fact having both is the optimal.

Kindness is right up there with gratitude on my shelf of tools that can change the world. I try and use them to make my own space better, but if we all used them, CAN YOU EVEN IMAGINE?

gratitude-a-thon day 854: parent teachers


There are days when my kids have garden variety problems, or garden variety problems that are like, the Jumbo Costco size, and I think it is the end of the world. I think the world is absolutely going to put up a sign that says, “THE END.”

I usually only think this way for a little bit, before I snap into solution mode, but I’ll tell you what really gets to me and makes me man up when I’m like this, and that’s looking at a parent with a chronically ill child, or who has a child who has an issue that will require constant attention throughout his or her life because of a physical or mental deficit. These are the parents that make me take notice, and learn how to prioritize,  because these are the parents that are tested in ways that make the SAT’s the LSAT’s and MCAT’s COMBINED look like ordering a vanilla ice cream cone. This is the kind of hard stuff that deserves medals and to have all calories removed from food as a little nod.

What I find fascinating about these parents, is that I know the love they have for their child. I know it because I have it for my child, and if you have a child, you have it for your child. It is a mixture of adoration, affection, and I-will-lay-myself-down-for-you-ness, all glued together with those valentine day heart candies with little messages and Skippy super chunk peanut butter. Everybody always says things like, “There is no love like a parent’s love.” And it sounds so trite, and Hallmark, but you know what? THERE IS NO LOVE LIKE A PARENT’S LOVE. It’s the goddamn truth.

So, there you are, all loving your child, and yet loving your child also brings difficulty. Talk about a challenging set of feelings. That deep, deep love, all mixed with complexity and pain. What a confusing cocktail.

And yet, I see parents who are presented with this and rise to the occasion better than a hot air balloon. And those are the people who I meet, or read about and never meet. who set me straight and give me strength when my kids are having a thing that freaks me out. These are the parents who didn’t order the Special, but got it anyway, and who teach the rest of us how to be better. Gratitude to those guys. They’ve taught volumes.


gratitude-a-thon day 853:


“I am grateful.”

Just saying this when I wake up forces me to take a closer look at my teeny tiny corner of the world, instead of diving right in and moving toward the consumption of images, and news, and to do lists, and panic at what I don’t have.

The fact that I wake up in a bed with multiple pillows and down comforters, and not on a floor, or on the street, under a bridge, on a piece of cardboard, is reason enough to get me through the day, because this is what it is–gratitude–noticing what you have.

But not just that–it’s also noticing what you DON’T have. This can make the observation of one’s list even more powerful. It makes you see how fortune has smiled upon you to be  picking up your mug of hot coffee to your lips in a well-equipped kitchen. Subtract your indoor plumbing, and tell me how your day is.

The things you have to be grateful for are endless, and that’s before you even get out of your pajamas “I am grateful” may be most transformative three words we can utter. And when we forget to say them, and find ourselves in need of more, or taking for granted what we possess, all we have to do is reset ourselves and say them, feel them, and like a magic wand, we’re brand new.

gratitude-a-thon day 851:the boston globe goes big


boston globe trump front page_0

Hooray for my hometown paper doing their part to dethrone that GOP candidate with the bad hair. I can barely say his name these days, so disgusted am I at his rapid rise and childish arrogance, not to mention the dribble of inhumanity that comes out of his mouth in the form of words. Gratitude to the gutsy Globe, goddamnit!

gratitude-a-thon day 850: eye see you

Looking at this video of a baby getting glasses, and seeing his mom for the first time, made me think about the amazingosity of being able to see.

I grew up with a dad who was already blind in one eye and when I born, and the threat of losing the sight in his remaining eye loomed like global warming. And while you can dismiss this idea of being grateful for my two working eyes, as trite, it is exactly this kind of thing, that we so easily forget is not a given, that we should stop every so often and get down on the ground and be thankful for. (I mean, if we didn’t have your eyes, you wouldn’t be reading this.)

gratitude-a-thon day 849: the brilliance of resilience


We all know them–those mom’s who brag about every move their children make. They can do an hour on how well Johnny breathes, for God sakes. It’s tedious, and annoying, and makes me want to tell them both my kids are serving life for a double homicide.

I’ve found, more than being proud of how my kids handle success, it’s how they handle failure that really impresses me.

There’s a lot that can go wrong out there in the world, and having resilience in the face of the poop emoji is the money shot in my book. Yay, your kid got a perfect S.A.T. score, yahoo, they won the Final Four pool. But has your baby faced a crisis? Has your kid been forced to dig down and pull himself to the sun, in the midst of a power outage?

To be able to flourish in the desert heat, learn when all you want to do is be under the covers, continue swimming when your life feels like a nuclear bomb has been dropped on it–that’s the stuff that makes me want to brag, you know, if I were that kind of mom. 

gratitude-a-thon day 848: one smart cookie


The Amy Schumer vs. Glamour mag. debacle. Seems Glamour did a  Plus-size issue, and put Amy’s name on the cover. Amy made a fuss, because she says plus-size is considered size 12 and up and she is a 6-8. On the surface you might think Amy is whining about being considered plus-size, but really what she’s saying is if a 6 or an 8 is now plus size, what message are we sending to our girls?

Pretty soon will a 2 or a 4 be plus size? Will a 0 be considered normal? I need to lose some weight.

Body acceptance is a slippery slope for us women. Even us older girls, like me. The media has glorified the adolescent body to such an extent that an ounce of fat has practically become a criminal offense. Don’t even discuss the word “cellulite,” and shut the front door if you decide to let yourself age naturally.

Anyway, this is a topic that I could discuss for the next year, but I will leave it at this: Amy Schumer is a God. She is smart and calls bullshit when she sees it. Don’t be mistaken that she is somehow insulted by Glamour calling her plus size because she’s vain, she’s pissed because she’s smart, and sees through the absolute absurdity that we have to have labels to start with.