Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Get Lost

A photo posted by Nazila (@nazilam) on

It can clear your mind and remind you forgot to use anti-perspirant this morning. Go do it.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

On the Selfoui

A photo posted by Nazila (@nazilam) on


I realize I'm being sort hypocritical here by posting this photo of these women taking a selfie, but I do try hard to blur out faces as much as possible, sue me. 

I'm of an age where I am starting to feel bad about my neck and for a long time, just felt bad about how I looked. I'm over that now, although I'm thinking investing in a few turtlenecks might not be a bad idea.

So, imagine how I really feel about selfies. I'm happy that others love taking them. I'm glad that is how others rejoice in friendship, impromptu gatherings, visits to the chiropractor and document each and moment by placing yourself in the picture.  I do a similar thing every day when I post a picture to instagram remember both the good and the bad that transpired. What I don't love is when your picture taking means that I'm also in your picture.

My friend Jess has a fabulous post about photographing people while they are eating, but in this case substitute me talking, bending over weeding, turned at an unflattering angle or just not in the mood to be captured in your need to be captured. I'm more than happy to pose when you ask me to pose, but I hate to be caught off guard.

There are truly some amazing photographers who have taken gorgeous candids of friends and family at events, even the most recalcitrant of victims party guests. It is also a given that at an anniversary party or graduation, there will be the family shots and these lovely folks realize that the events are to be documented and either prepare (Xanax anyone?) or are happy to comply. I'm not sure if this is a generational thing, but always think before you snap.




Friday, May 15, 2015

TGIF

A photo posted by Nazila (@nazilam) on



I'm feeling about 60% of normal. I still can't go to the gym. I barely managed to get halfway packed today, walked the dog once and read a book. I'm glad I was an Energizer bunny early in the week because had I any notion that I was going to be out for two solid days, I would have wept into my chia flax flakes on Monday.

Yay Friday.


Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Wednesday wrap up




Pretty good day around here if you discout the fact it rained (poor Ernest).

I managed to get some paperwork sorted,  made it to  Dress For Success to drop off donations including some lovely dresses that no longer fit me but will make some petite woman very happy. I struggled with letting them go. I realized that other than a few occasions where photos are used to document events, I could wear a paper yard waste sack with a nice Hermes belt and no one would remember what I wore to x event.

The same thing goes for shoes. I really wanted to buy a new pair of sneakers for an upcoming trip and went to Nordstrom to try them on for size (really, for size as the do run large).  The shoes were cute, they were not in the color I wanted.  I had to leave to attend a lunch honoring Nora Pouillon and on my way back to the car struggled with going back in the store to look for a substitute shoe.  When I got to the entrance, I turned back.  I took five seconds to think about why I wanted the shoes to match a skirt perfectly.while the ones I had in my closet were not perfect, they would do and no one would remember what I had on my feet.

It is more important to be remarkable and memorable because you are articulate, interesting and attentive. That is what people should and will remember about you no matter if your shoes don't match your skirt.



Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Road food

A photo posted by Nazila (@nazilam) on



I'm all for packing snacks to take on the road. You never know when you'll end up stuck in an airport or wake up in the middle of the night starving.  I usually pack a few Larabars which never seem to get eaten, a package or two of m&ms (don't judge), turkey jerky (in the day), a few apples and satsumas if I know my upgrade isn't going to clear and I'm going to be hungry.

The April 14, 2015 New York Times food section was devoted to the sandwich with many different recipes and ideas to spice up your sandwiches.  Martha Rose Shulman suggested making a goat cheese and roasted pepper sandwich which doesn't get soggy because the peppers are placed between the goat cheese encrusted bread.  This sounds like a great idea, but I still wonder if the goat cheese is going to be okay after 12 hours in transit.

My sandwich choice is the solid peanut butter and marmalade sandwich - Paddington style. It is a sandwich that holds up to being smushed in the bottom of my bag and can be eaten any where. If you are concerned about nut allergies, you can sub out sunflower butter, but don't skip the marmalade.

A photo posted by Nazila (@nazilam) on



I have to admit that I'm in awe of the English and their fascination with the sandwich - I've had many a meal of the cut rate sandwich eaten on the train or in my hotel room late at night.  They seem to cram so many things in the sandwich and because they are British, they seem so exotic.  My favorite sandwich was the cheese and celery sandwich from Marks and Spencer.  There was something about the crisp and mineral taste of the celery mixed with the mature cheese and mayonnaise that was comforting to me.  I haven't been able to locate them recently, but I would break my dairy embargo to have one soon.

I can't wait.

What is your favorite traveling sandwich?


Monday, May 11, 2015

Overthinking

A photo posted by Nazila (@nazilam) on
Marie Kondo advocates for socks standing up in the drawers, I would rather see skunk cabbages stand at attention.  

I am a pro at overthinking things - airplane routings, hotel loyalty strategies, dinner options and now - where to donate my stuff.

A million bloggers have written about Marie Kondo and her best selling book about how tidying up can change your life and release unicorns. I know I have piles of things that do not bring me joy, but I'll be pretty pissed if I go looking for something specific and it is gone. The truth is that I don't need four gray cashmere sweaters and six pairs of chinos that really do nothing for me better than before butt.  I do need to keep at least two pairs of Prada flats, one pair of Jimmy Choo pumps and a few purses because I'm not going to spend money to replace those.

So, the letting go is hard for me. I have memories associated with many things - shoes that I instagrammed to death in Paris and Rome, a slightly tight sweater I bought because I was cold somewhere and promised myself would look great if I took off 10 lbs. and never wore again, a hard backed sketchbook I bought in Boston that I never used to write my deepest thoughts because it was the wrong dimensions.  Some of these objects are captured through photos so I can refer to them if I want such as the shoes, but others (tight sweater and sketch books) serve to remind me that I did not follow through with my goals.

What vexes me the most now is the actual disposing of the piles of unloved goods. It seems that most places (shelters, hygiene banks, help centers) are not as interested in your stuff, no matter how awesome it is and want money instead. I really can't blame them - money is easier to handle and can be used to provide directed services, but it is getting more and more vexing as a person who would love to see her stuff go somewhere.

I was happy to see that YWCA's Dress for Success Program is taking career clothing - which I have a bunch of as well as barely used casual jeans and tops which I am also happy to donate. I found an organization in Seattle that teaches young kids how to write and communicate that can use my many sketchbooks and who knows who will get small kitchen appliances and thousand orchid pots that we keep on accumulating.  I'll probably take this to Goodwill which has kindly opened a donation center on my daily ant path of errands.

To me there is no joy in the art of tidying up my stuff, it makes me realize that I do a lot of impulsive buying and not knowing what I leads to duplicate purchases.  While I'm not going to spend a lot of effort inventorying my closet, I have a better grip on what I have and hopefully will find some excitement in putting on those Choos to go to lunch with the girls.