Saturday, February 28, 2009

The woman I want to be

There is this song on country radio right now by Montgomery Gentry called Roll With Me that makes me stop and think every time I hear it. I've always been big into music and especially song lyrics. In fact an old friend of mine recently asked me if I still have the dozens of journals I was always copying lyrics into. (The answer is yes, I do. Though I didn't realize every one knew I did that.) I guess as a writer I'm always looking for the perfect words to express myself and sometimes these song writers just nail it head on you know? The chorus of this particular song starts like this:

So now I'm slowing it down and I'm looking around
And I'm lovin' this town and I'm doing alright
Ain't worried 'bout nothing 'cept for the man I wanna be

Those lyrics have become the theme song to "The year of Tiffy" that I've embarked on. I want to slow down, take a look around and really take the time to enjoy this life I'm living. No, it's not perfect. It's not even remotely what I had envisioned for myself even two short years ago. What it IS is my life, the only life I'm going to get, and I want to take the time to savor the moments while they are happening because once this day is over I can't ever get it back. Not to sound too melodramatic or anything but I just really don't want to look back on my life and think I have wasted any time being needlessly unhappy, or unfulfilled, or doing things I know I shouldn't be doing. I want to look back and be proud of what I accomplish every day, I want to be happy with my actions, feel content with the person I've portrayed. I want to be the best wife/daughter/friend/sister I can be with no regrets.

I was out working a lunch event last week and got to chatting with one of the guys who is a regular customer of mine. He was telling me about how he spends as many hours a day outdoors as possible, running or hiking or just sitting in the park with his dog. He explained how he thinks life is too short to be bored, how he changed careers after 20 successful years to get into a different field because he was tired of being good at, but not feeling great about what he did for a living. Y'all, it was like talking to an older, male version of myself. He gave me some advice about not wasting time wanting to make changes to my life but instead seizing every opportunity. He told me it isn't selfish to want to make myself happy, and in fact by making myself happy I'll be making those who love me happy at the same time. It really resonated with me because as much as I joke about wanting my life to be "all about me" I struggle with putting my own desires above other people's. His comment was that it's up to them to live their days to the fullest and that I can't do it for them.

I don't know if this man was divinely inspired to speak to me or if it was just one of those rare moments when someone can sense what you are going through and offers some perspective. Either way I've been replaying that conversation in my head for the past few days. Funny how sometimes a stranger can speak to you so clearly, and make such an impact. It reminds me of this saying that used to hang over the desk of an old college professor of mine that said "always smile and speak positively because you never know whose life you can touch with love."

Make it a great day!

Friday, February 27, 2009

On my mind

I'm working from home for a few hours this morning. I have some admin things to take care of in relation to the new month's menu that I can't concentrate on amid the hustle and bustle of our kitchen in full prep mode for the largest catering job I think any of us have ever worked on. Trouble is, I can't concentrate here at home either! Like for example... why the hell have I been awake since 5:30 this morning on the first morning in days I don't have to be awake this early for work??? It's unfair really. And so, while I try to drum up the concentration required for prep lists and so on, I'll take a few moments to share with you guys one of the things running through my head which is, apparently, keeping me awake at night. I know you are excited.

A few weeks back, TheBoy finally managed to convince me that we should go up and play in the snow. Some friends of ours have access to a cabin in Lake Tahoe and invited us along for a mini-vacation weekend and, in a moment of weakness, and amid imploring puppy-dog eye type looks from my poor snow deprived husband, I agreed to go. For those of you just now joining the show, I do not like snow. At all. I do not like to be cold. I am completely unprepared for it to BE cold. Call it living in denial but the sum total of my "cold weather" gear includes one (1) fleece jacket purchased for me by TheBoy for a backpacking trip because he actually wanted to wear his own fleece for once, one (1) pair of mitten-type gloves that I am pretty sure I borrowed from someone a decade ago and never returned, and a pair of faux Uggs, in pink, also purchased for me by a friend who thought it was funny and that I needed pink Uggs. I also have some assorted leg-warmers which I have been told are both out of fashion AND not practical for snow wear.

Ah... the sacrifices we make to keep our loved ones happy.

At some point during the weekend, while I was being mocked for being so cold (in the SNOW people! It WAS cold!) someone suggested I get a snuggie. Since TheBoy and I do not currently have TV I was beforehand unaware of the awesomeness that is the snuggie OR the hysterical commercials. I mean really... A cuddly warm blanket with sleeves?? Thank you Jesus for the divine inspiration that created this product especially for people like me! Of course, after a few days I had forgotten all about the longed for snuggie until Wednesday of this week when I heard on the radio about the (drum roll please) First Ever Snuggie Pup Crawl in SF!! Can you imagine the strange looks a gaggle of blanket (with sleeves!) wearing people will get traipsing from bar to bar in San Francisco? Awesome!

On second thought, it IS San Francisco so perhaps no one will notice or think its odd at all.

(still giggling to myself that there is a Snuggie Pub Crawl TEAM, ahem, moving on)

And on that note, dear reader, I think I will go make breakfast for the hubby and me before I tackle the new menu and all its associated spreadsheets. Oh, and I should go wash my new tattoo.

Like how I just casually threw that in there? Most of the "friends of Tiffy" know I've been wanting a couple new tattoos for awhile now and last night I finally just went and did it. I've been waiting for the right time for this one, on my foot, so that I would have a few days of non running around to do so I could let it heal properly and since I have a three day weekend this week I figured why the heck not. The artist who did it, who was awesome btw, said he thinks I'll be able to lace up my running shoes in a couple days with no problem which was my main concern. Anyway, there is a story behind it (of course, this is ME we are talking about here) but it'll have to wait for another day. I promise I'll have better, non-Vaseline-y, photos for you then also.

Make it a great day!

Saturday, February 21, 2009


When I was a child I actually used to dread the weekends. No, you did not read that wrong. See the thing is, I was an only child. Even worse, I was an only child that changed schools (if not entire towns) every two years, pretty much like clockwork. So, you can imagine that I 1) did not have many friends and 2) had no one at home to play with when I was bored except dolls and my mom. Now my mom is a patient woman but there is only so much "playing" a woman in her late-thirties or early-forties can endure with a child right? I can't even imagine really.

So, in an odd twist of fate I used to dread Friday afternoons and I absolutely LOVED Monday mornings. Friday afternoons promised nothing more than endless TGIF on TV (thank you Full House) and hours of reading in my room by myself. You can see why as a child I was prone to such odd tendencies as sectioning off our kitchen to play "chef" with my parents' breakfast, or constructing outfits out of paper grocery bags. Ahem. Though on a positive note, I believe that THIS is why I have always been an avid reader. Silver lining indeed. On the flip side Monday mornings meant an entire week's worth of learning (huge dork!) and also at least some contact with people my own age. Even if it was awkward and painful.

Thankfully at some point around High School I managed to collect a few friends AND some outside of school interests so I began to look forward to the weekends like most normal people. Once I started working it was even better because I could finally complain (with a valid reason) about having to get up early for work and so on. Weekends were filled with shopping trips with the girls or parties at some one's house or (later) going out dancing until the wee hours. Monday mornings meant suits and contracts and hours upon hours in front of a computer monitor. Finally I was normal.

But lately I've begun dreading the weekends again and looking forward to Mondays. I'd like to think that it is mostly because I love my new job and finally can look forward to going to work because there is fun stuff to do there and I'm fairly good at it. Sadly I know that the loving work thing isn't really the entire reason I dread the weekends. If I'm being honest, it probably has more to do with the fact that it is now almost 3 pm on a Saturday and so far today I have worked out, done laundry, cleaned the bathrooms and run errands. You can see this is not as exciting as my earlier days of dancing or shopping with friends. In fact, today it has gotten so bad that I've resorted to doing chores I NEVER do (like removing everything off shelves and washing them, with soap and water(!), before spraying them with the wood cleaner/polisher and then putting everything back) just so I will have something to do to occupy my time.

And I know I COULD do something about it. But I really don't want to drive an hour to meet up with friends for an hour. That math doesn't compute in my brain (1 hour there, 1 hour of fun, and 1 hour home). And they. likewise, don't feel like driving an hour to come hang out with me for an hour. So here I sit, stalking people on Facebook, as I wait for the dryer to turn off so I can throw another load of laundry in and wait for it to be Monday.

I told you people I was complicated and you wouldn't understand.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


I know I owe some of you interview questions from last month. I'm working on them I swear! Lets just say my computer time is limited. But I will get them to you soon!


That. Girl.

In High School I used to know this girl, well "know" isn't maybe the right word. I knew by sight and occasionally spoke to, this girl whom I went to high school with (that's better) who had this reputation around school as "the party girl". In fact, you know those Senior polls every high school seems to do around year book time? Well she was up for the "life of the party" award our Senior year and rumor had it that she was campaigning heavily AGAINST herself because she didn't want to have her party status recorded for all eternity.

You know, she didn't want to be "that girl".

Ahh... How I loathe those words. That. Girl.

In fact in high school I spent considerable amounts of time trying to live up to other people's (unrealistic) expectations of me and any time I slipped, even a smidge, from being "perfect" I would be labeled as "that girl". "That girl" also was known by such other titles as "such a disappointment", "not living up to her potential" and my all time favorite "the bad influence".

Now people, I grew up in the church. My father (the one I never speak to admittedly, but whom I DID see when I was wee) was some sort of deacon or elder and my mother always took me to church. I went to a Christian school in the 2nd and 3rd grades, and then again in junior high school. I was active in my youth group until the end of high school, never missed a Sunday service and had a freaking promise ring for that whole "true love waits" movement. I was hardly a bad kid. In fact, looking back I would say I was damn near saintly when compared to other teens!

Wow. Tangent much?

So. As I was starting to get at before I climbed up on a little soap box there, someone today called me "the biggest party girl I know". My initial reaction was "ouch" followed by the ever-present justification of "well she doesn't know me THAT well". But on my way home from work today I started thinking about the differences between the person that we all are, that deep down inside being honest with ourselves person that we ARE, and the person we portray to the world. And I realized, almost shamefully, that the person I portray is not even close to the person that I think I am, OR the version of myself I am working so hard to be.

So then I started thinking about WHY I portray such an out of character persona... All I can come up with is that I feel like I don't really have anyone who understands ME, the real me.* I either know people I met years ago who are used to a certain version of me, or I meet people now whom I instinctively distrust (whole other issue I know) and feel like I can't be myself around. But then I think... These people in my life don't know the real me because I don't let them in to SEE the real me. It's a catch 22, you know? My friends don't know me because I don't let them in on anything real, and then I feel like I don't have any friends because no one understands the real me.

I guess I really am that girl.

*Before I get a bunch of hate mail from the real life "friends of Tiffy" please stop to consider the truth of that sentence...

Monday, February 02, 2009


As someone who routinely shoves her foot in her mouth by saying the wrong thing and whose mouth never slows down to listen to her brain, I truly appreciate when I see other people do the same thing. Its amusing and also comforting to see that dawning look of "holy crap I didn't mean it THAT way" followed by some rapid fire back-pedaling. At least I know I am not the only one you know?

But today I witnessed this very thing, and it was directed at ME! I'm still chuckling to myself right now, not sure if I should be flattered or insulted but I certainly laughed harder than I have in ages. Even though I know I won't do it justice (in lines with that whole "you had to be there" thing) I'll try to describe what happened.

So I mentioned before that my company is helping to sponsor this fitness challenge that starts on V-Day. There are a few personal trainers, some massage therapists, sports medicine folks and then us (we do the pre-packaged fitness meals). Today, I was describing to a different trainer (not involved) what exactly was involved with the challenge and so on. I had mentioned in passing that I wished I had the money to join up because I would love to see that kind of transformation in my own work outs and he was describing some of the results he's had with various clients.

All of a sudden he blurted out, "I'd love to get my hands on your body!"


Y'all! What could I do? I burst into laughter, the kind where you can't really breathe because you are laughing so hard? The poor guy was half-heartedly chuckling along with me, alternating between laughter and back-peddling like crazy, trying to decide if I was going to slap him with some sort of lawsuit I'm sure. I managed to decipher through the haze of hilarity that apparently this guy has had great success with petite ladies who want to do fitness shows and has decided that I have what it takes to be fairly successful at it.

Made my day to be honest. :D