monday mash up, september 17

Monday Mash Up9_17.jpg

1. New planner | 2. Magazine heaven | 3. Dinner out | 4. Lining up for the race | 5. Traffic hell | 6. Photography practice | 7. Autumn weather | 8. Wine tasting yummies | 9. King Neptune

You guys. You guys. Oh gosh. Are we all in a funk? :) So many of you left amazing comments or reached out to me privately. I can't tell you what it meant to me. If anything, me saying that I get stuck with this sometimes and how you responded, reaffirms that I need to stay in this space. I needed you, and you (as always), lifted me up. You do it every time.

So how was everybody's weekend. I promised I'd show you my new planner, and that's it in the first photo. I'm really happy. It's nice to be carrying some of my photos around in planner form. Should you get one and go with the photo collage option, I would caution this: my photos feel dark, so maybe do a little lightening of your pics before uploading them. Just sayin'.

I feel like I started my weekend early with an awesome birthday lunch with my friend Tracy. How is it that being with your girlfriends can lift you up so much too. That and a honkin' big stack of magazines. I went giddily crazy, and yay for me! It was my first time with Garden and Gun, and already I'm a fan. It reminds me most of Sunset, which I still miss from our days out West, so I'm mulling over a subscription. I may give it another issue before I decide.

We had dinner out Friday night (I love Friday night) after a nice evening in the hood. It's cooler here now and everyone is coming out of their houses to mingle in their yards. When we first moved here our realtor called this a front-yard neighborhood, and Friday night is a good example of why. When we were at dinner, Neel saw one of his students (this happens quite a lot actually). This person, now a fourth-year medical student, shook Callum's hand and said, "Your dad's a great teacher." That wasn't a bad moment at all.

And then Saturday. Well. Callum had his first cross country meet in Williamsburg, which is about 45 minutes away from us. The bus left school at 6:45 a.m., so we were out the door pretty early. He ran at 8:30 and didn't do too badly for his first go, especially given that this course has hills and we don't grow those where we live! What we do grow around here is water, and you have to go over a bridge or through a tunnel to get pretty much anywhere around here. The bridge/tunnel we take to get home was closed for repaving, as was another. So all of the traffic traveling from one side of the water to another was funneled onto one bridge. We got caught in that traffic and sat. And sat. And sat. A car two in front of us over heated, and by the time all was said and done, we passed three accidents, including a charred out minivan. Nice. At one point Neel said to Callum, "We've seen worse. We've been in traffic jams where people get out of their cars and walk around." About ten minutes later he said, "Why don't you get out of the car and walk around?" We finally pulled off for a bathroom break and a quick bite to eat, and got right back into the mess. By the time all was said and done, it took us five and a half hours to get home. For a 45 minute trip. The only thing that got us through was Vanity Fair! (Of course!) I read Neel and Callum the absolutely amazing article that Michael Lewis wrote on President Obama. If you haven't had a chance to read it yet, I simply can't recommend it enough. We were rivited, and I read it right up until the car came to a stop as I finished the last sentence.

But. Back to work for me on Sunday. Did I tell you I'm taking one of Nicole's Classes? Tabletop Photography. I know, I know. I already do a lot of tabletop photography, but my skills could always use work, my styling skills especially. Some folks cautioned that it might be a bit basic for me, but I've already learned a lot...the trickiest part is finding time to fit it all in. I will do anything, really, if it will help me feel more confident, both as a photographer and a human. Perhaps in a week or so, I'll wow you with my prowess!

It was gorgeous and cool all weekend, so the windows went up and the house felt delicious. My lovelies at Simply Selma's invited us to join them at the Neptune Wine Festival, and how can you say no to an invitation like that? I took tons of pictures, and if I can get all my editing done tomorrow, I'm hoping I can treat you to a Tuesday Wine-Tasting Post. Its working title is "Where's My Wine, Bitches?"

So perhaps things are on the upswing. I think the thing I realized that I need to remember is to be authentic. Don't be afraid to say, "Yeah, I'm not not great. I'm okay, but not great." And let the people who love you lift you up. They want to. I know that when my friends are down, when any one of you is down, that's what I want to do. So maybe I'm not 100%, but it's a new week. I'm a lot better, and what I know is this: more authentic is where I want to be.