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I like recognizing progress.  Today is one of those days.  I’ve had rather serious “overtones” to the day, and really, that’s what makes me feel like I moved forward.

A distant acquaintance of mine passed away yesterday.  Dr. Frank Ryan.  I always knew him as Dr. Frank. He had an amazing ranch up in Malibu and would throw the most amazing parties – I mean, imagine 20 – 30 tents pitched for invited guests to spend the night in tents that had sleeping bags, flashlights, food, drinks, party favors…….any thing you could imagine.  Dr. Frank sat with me the night I met him and talked about trail riding, hosting, cooking, religion, and life……….and how to turn a piece of land into a place that welcomes anyone and everyone.  I’ve often thought of Dr. FR when I have planned parties.  One day, just in his honor, I’m going to host a party with tents pitched everywhere; bbq pits all over; and fully stocked bars overlooking amazing vista points — all in his honor.  And just to confirm the news reports – I had a very deep conversation with him about his abstaining from alcohol and drugs – and he helped me understand my husband’s decisions.  For those of you he knew him better than I did, I can’t imagine the impact this has on you; I’m lucky to have had the moments that I had with him.  His phone number has joined a few others as the “inspirational crew” who can’t be reached by phone.  Thank you, Dr. Frank, for being cool as all sh** and still living your life by your convictions.  As Alec said, “[He was] such a good guy.”

I have tons of photos from Dr. Frank’s pony ranch, but I still have no idea how to retrieve them from my backup files that my husband so cleverly set up………….

Moving on.

Ellie and I cooked, cleaned, shopped and laughed together today.  I love how this little person has become my companion: conversing, arguing, challenging, and teaching me.  If I start writing more, I might border on obsession and boring you guys, so I’ll spare you the gushing.  Suffice it to say, my daughter kicks ass, and I adore her!!!!!!


We woke up late, but made zucchini bread/muffins, sweet pickle relish, chicken tagine…………

ok, I'm cool with putting whatever is in this bowl in that cloth bag....even though I think you're nuts.

Ok, I'm doing it.....................

That is just simply disgusting!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

MOMMY!!!!!! NO LIKE IT!!!!!!

Since we got cucumber on the previous dress, we decided to wear ONLY an apron for the zucchini bread

She actually HELPS.....

OH, and we managed to fit in an hour or two in the garden pulling weeds, zucchini and carrots, followed by a quick introduction to Shrek (the most important part of the movie being in the first 30 seconds……….Shrek jumps into a pool of water…that’s all that the movie is about for my little 2 year old.  “Shrek. Jump. Agua……….MOMMY!!!!!!!!!!!!! SHREK! JUMP! AGUA!” is about all I have heard since 6 pm tonight).

I LOVE zucchini bread.............though I did burn the first batch

The Moroccan Chicken I made in the tagine

Jake's birthday gift that I decided to use. Le Creuset's Tagine

Homemade Pickle Relish. Hmmm...I hate relish, so I can't tell if it's good or bad. It tastes like relish - so I think I might have been successful.

Sigh. This whole decision I’ve made to maintain discipline might be working to snap me out of my mood…….oh, and the trip I just booked to Nashville for a random weekend with Gina and Renee is going to be AMAZING! AND since Gina is working for Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, it might even be philanthropic!  Things could be worse (that’s a nod to you, Philippe!).



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