November 30, 2016

Drinking From The Sky

One breath

and then another

SLOWLY

GENTLY

DEEPLY

Breath is the link between our body and our mind,

where no one,

can steal our peace.


November 19, 2016

Simply Simple



Sixty-four year old make-up artist, Cindy Joseph, got her first modeling job the same day she cut off her last bit of colored hair and went all gray.

I love what she shares here about the beauty of aging and the make-up line she created called Boom, which is the first cosmetic line to celebrate aging, instead of covering it up.

I also love what she shares at 8:15 about how when we are revved up about life, how it changes the dewiness to our complexion.

More on Cindy's line and great philosophy here.


November 12, 2016

Only Tears



I've been trying to get my mind around that we are about to replace Obama with a very scary creature, as well as understand how all this happened.

Perhaps we had to fall this low to wake everyone up who voted for him, and voted out, so many critical things that we as humans and our environment need- including a sane leader.

No more words,

only tears.

Sending love your way.

October 31, 2016

Nourish

The two emotions that mess us up the most are fear and anger.

We can't be grateful and fearful at the same time, as we cannot be grateful and angry simultaneously.

But what can we find in fear and anger?

This I know- there is a lot to be learned in times of struggle.

We just need to be patience with ourselves, to get to the other side, so that we can see it.


With the election now within arms reach and so much uncertainly and fear in the air-

what can we do to nourish ourselves?

How do we step outside our heads and breath in optimism and gratitude?

How do we nurture ourselves with more nourishing thoughts?

We can't change the chaos in the world but we can change what we listen to and reroute the thoughts in our heads. Change the channel, as I like to say.

We can change who we are in the midst of chaos.

So today, I turn to gratitude and creativity.

Today I choose health and happiness.

Today, I choose love.
 

October 28, 2016

The Wholeness of Who We Are





This week, a beautiful clip by Elisa Romeo from Hay House Radio.

The soul is the wholeness of who we are,

The wisest and most loving part of us.

The part of us that really matters

and lasts forever.





October 22, 2016

What The?


Just a quickie today as I am knee deep in a freelance knitwear project. 

A few weeks ago we updated our Iphones to ios 10.0.2 and very soon were curiously out of data. 

What the heck is going on, I wondered...

It turns out that in that little agreement that we say yes to, before updating our phones (and never read), there is a clause that if wifi is weak, our phones will automatically use cellular data to improve the connection.

The cell phone companies must be loving this one.

Anyway should you like to turn it off, just go into "Settings" and then into "Cellular" and down at the bottom slide "Wi-fi Assist" to off.

This morning while it poured outside my kitchen window, I did the dishes while listening to Pandora. Burt Bacharach's 1964 ballad, "Anyone Who Had a Heart", sung by Dionne Warwick came on. The words are kind of co-dependent but the melody and her voice...are like sweet butter.

Thank you Burt & Dionne for inspiring me to spin across the kitchen 

with my dish towel, on a rainy day.



October 15, 2016

Inside of Us

Last weekend I took a solo journey to Kripalu, while Mr. Fix-It was away. I had never been to Kripalu and was curious to spend some time there, especially since I've been doing more yoga lately.

It had been a long time since I ventured off on my own like this. I don't think I've ever been alone for 3 days, even though there were plenty of other people there. It was a bit scary heading out, but also exciting to be doing it.

What was it going to be like to just be with myself for 3 days?

Who am I when everything else is not there?

Frequently lately, I've been craving more time alone. I've needed to cut the engine and stop taking care of what sometimes seems like a gazillion things and too many people.

I bet this rings a bell with many of you, nurturers that we are.

It turned out that I really liked the solitude, as I thought I would.

I stayed in a non-snoring dorm room with about 20 other women and decided to eat all my meals in the silent dining room. It was actually a relief not to speak with anyone unless I chose to.

One of my favorite things that I did all weekend was take a two hour paddle boarding class, where 12 of us paddled out into the lake, laid down on our boards and mediated among the lily pads and geese, while drifting back to shore. It was divine.

Peace and tranquility.

I found what I went looking for.

And a little bit more of me.


September 30, 2016

The Things That We Don't Know That We Don't Know


Sitting here beyond mid-life now, it's apparent to me finally what the gifts are that I was given.

Here is the question however, what gifts have we all been given that we aren't aware of because we haven't yet discovered them?

Like the things that we don't know that we don't know.

Maybe one of the best things about aging is discovering parts of ourselves that we have yet to uncover.

If we will only step out and allow ourselves to reach for them.

Perhaps I am a good pastel artist and I don't even know it because I haven't picked up a pastel since I was in grammar school.

For all of us, one of the gifts that we were given is our voice. The ability to speak the truth for ourselves. To say what it is that we are yearning for. To tell it like it is and not mask who we really are and what we want.

Our voice however takes practice as we are sometimes afraid to speak up and share our truths and opinions with others.

The energy to speak is located in our 5th chakra of self-expression.

It is where my energy gets blocked the most I know. When my voice changes pitch it is a warning that I am stressed about what it is I need to say or do.

Or not do.

Sometimes what I really need to do is stop doing.

I know you know what I'm talking about.

Sometimes we need to turn off our phones and shut out the world so we can slip away from the all the pings, and dings, and rings and see what else might happen.

Like the things that we don't even know that we don't know.

September 25, 2016

Naked Truth

This is my dear friend Chris who I have known for ages. She took this photo of herself after getting out of the shower the other day and sent it to me.

She is sixty-seven and without make-up.

Chris has always been a beauty and still very much is, especially with a smile that lights up her eyes.

Along with the photo, she sent this message:

"After decades of attention towards my genetic good fortune, baffled because my looks were no accomplishment of mine, my beauty began to change and my social value did too. It wasn't my turn anymore. I was always more important than my looks AND unprepared for life under a dimmer spotlight. Life in America as a woman was confusing on that count. Now I know the deal and recognize aging as a source of wisdom and grounding.

I've stopped lamenting about visible aging. One of my teachers also a former stunner, taught me "I was beautiful then and I'm beautiful now."

More on Chris and her inspirations on aging here. 

Also this week on Huffington Post: 14 women show off wrinkles to make a potent statement about aging.

September 15, 2016

Growing Harder



It has occurred to me in last few years that one of the keys to feeling well, healthy and staying fit is increasing and maintaining muscle mass.

After the age of 40, each year we lose 1/3 of a pound of muscle to fat.

The other truth is this:

Muscle burns 2.5 times as many calories as fat.

I know, I know...

So you can see what a slippery slope it is when we don't continue to build and maintain muscle.

When we don't build muscle, we usually put on more weight as we grow older. The worst thing is that the added weight causes all sorts of issues like knee, hip and back problems, not to mention diabetes. When we stop moving, because we are in pain or because we are unable to move, the slope unfortunately gets even slipperier.

Even at rest, muscle burns 2.5 times as many calories as fat.

There are many ways to build muscle but swimming is excellent because water is 12 times as dense as air. It's great resistance training. This makes swimming a far more effective way to tone muscles than any other cardio exercise on land.

Once we get over having to put on a bathing suit, and bear the 10 seconds it takes to adjust to the water temperature after plunging in, we can gradually add on more lengths each time we swim, until you start feeling like THIS.

Thank you to Sam at Team Sam Fitness for this week's inspiration.
( Sam is a cancer survivor and was hired along with me, to launch Nestle's new Boost product, Simply Complete.)

Thank you also to my mama for her inspiration. At 94 she is still strong enough to not sit on the toilet seat in public restrooms.

Every time she does it I'm amazed.


September 09, 2016

Putting It Down


It has been said that we have 60,000 thoughts every day.

Gosh is this true?

It has also been said that 90% of our thoughts are the same thoughts that we had the day before.

This I believe. I can see why it is beneficial to read books, seek different experiences and meet new people.

It's refreshing to change the channel in our heads and get rid of the thoughts that don't serve us. We all know the ones I'm talkin' about.

What thoughts in our daily mental chatter can we put down and lay to rest?

Kind of like a fall cleaning for the brain.

One of thoughts that I can put down is that I wish I was smarter. I wish I could talk about practically anything but I can't.

The other day I went to my first hot yoga class ever. I don't like hot weather and have resisted going, like the plague.

I thought I wouldn't like it but I loved it.

It felt like I was in a cocoon of rejuvenation- to stretch and sweat like I have never sweated before.

What a wonderful thing it is.

Thank you to Alyssa Hale for this week's inspiration.

August 26, 2016

There's A Crack In Everything


The only thing that I can compare waiting for the docu-ad to be released is being 9 months pregnant, anticipating the arrival of a child. I can't tell you how many times I have checked their webpage. 

Their website analytics person must be wondering what IP address is clicking on it no less than 3 times a day.

It's me, it's me!

Apparently the ad has been completed but is no doubt going through another editing phase.

Last weekend, my four siblings and I moved my mom out of her apartment, that she has loved at her retirement home. She is now in just one room there, so that she can receive more care.

She has handled all these late-in-life transitions so well. I only hope that I will be equally as chill when it comes time for me to give away all the things I have loved and lived with for so many years. A physical dismantling of a life. 

One step closer to heaven, as she continues to do her artwork.

As I've unpacked her treasures that I chose in the sometimes turbulent sibling divvy, I've been close to tears at times. Heavy in my heart but also very grateful. 

Grateful not so much for her treasures, but for the remarkable woman she continues to be.

How interesting (and hard)  it must be to watch your children chose from your life, what they would like to have in their own. 

Knowing that you can't take it with you.

xo

August 16, 2016

The Other Secret


The secret is to keep doing things we love to do.

I'm finding however that some of the things I've always loved to do seem to have had the wind blown out of them a little as I've grown older. Like it's time to move on and discover new things to love.

Are you finding this too?

I made my first vision board ever this month. Mr. Fix-It and I each made our own. I've always hesitated making one because I am more of a "be here now" person and don't think a whole lot about the future. But I surprised myself as I thought to include a list of simple life goals and things I want to get better at- like being a better listener and not taking things personally. Gosh, as a mom and a wife, is this ever a hard one to get over, but I can honestly say I've made a little headway already.

Also on my board is a reminder to always provide myself with plenty of flowers, music and human touch.

Oh and one more thing,

at least one daily dose of chocolate.

August 09, 2016

Nestle's Boost ~ Simply Complete

The 15 and 30 second commercials for the docu-ad that I am in are finally done. 

Hallelujah!

The longer version is still being completed but I thought I'd share these two for now.

The swimming scene was shot at Walden Pond in Concord, MA, where I love to swim when I have time.

I was so stunned to see myself the first time I watched these. For some reason I was expecting to be surprised by the footage but it looks very much like how I remember it being filmed.

I'm just relieved that I don't look like I have on as much make-up as I did.

I'm also so relieved that I don't look as nervous as I felt the first morning of filming, in the periwinkle t-shirt.

So here it is-

I bring you Nestle's new Boost product, called Simply Complete:


July 31, 2016

Love. Chain. Dance

Rose of Sharon
I've received news that the docu-ad has been completed and should be online SOON! It has been a sometimes excruciating 8 week wait but its release is perfect timing perhaps, with the Olympics commencing this Friday.

Not really excruciating, but when I didn't hear an update for a few weeks, I began to think that maybe I had ended up on the editing room floor and they were afraid to tell me.

I know, I know....

What we think about, we become...

We are what we think...

I tried not to go there but sometimes I did.

Anyway, I won't see the ad until it is launched...

I feel so...I don't know what...naked?

But mostly excited.

On another note-

I am probably one of the last people to get on board with the not-so-delicious, but very nutritious, kale craze.

It's been in our garden for many summers. If someone else prepares it, I will eat it, but I've officially turned the corner (which my farmer daughter will no doubt be very happy about).

Thank you for planting something I didn't like honey, it worked.

Check out this yummy Super Summer Kale Salad. ( I add only 1/4 cup of sugar).

Also this week if you haven't seen it, 42 American contemporary choreographers link together on a very cool, chain love letter dance.

July 23, 2016

Lately



It seems that between all the terrorist attacks in the news, as well as the presidential election, there is a lot of crazy mixed-up sadness happening in the world.

More than ever, I hesitate to even turn on the TV and am deciding instead to not listen.

It's so much nicer to visit a happier place in our heads.

It's good to remember that of the 7 billion people in the world, only a small percentage of us are full of hatred and fear, which is very reassuring and true.

Also this week,

I want to share this emotional guidance scale with you ( you can click on it for better viewing).

Thank you to both Brenda and Cindy again for your inspirations this week.

I am spreading the love far and wide to all my readers out there today.

And every day.

I hope that you can feel it.

 xo


July 19, 2016

Our Greatest Strength






As I await the release of the energy drink docu-ad that was filmed of me at the beginning of June, I've had some moments of feeling vulnerable. I'm mostly excited to see it but a little voice of anxiety pops up in me occasionally that I have to quell and remember to just trust the process.

Really is it so terrible if I look and/or sound bad?

As my friend Cindy would say, we need to keep our spirits with us in the front seat, not our egos.

In this clip, BrenĂ© Brown says she was raised, like many others, to believe vulnerability is a weakness. In fact, she says, we can't have true courage unless we open ourselves up to vulnerability. Watch to find out why sharing our feelings— is the only way to dare greatly in life.


July 11, 2016

The Sun and the Moon and the Stars

For years I was very curious about astrology. Then life got crazy raising a family and my interest in it slipped into the background.
 
Enter Chani Nicholas, a very intuitive, thought provoking astrologer, whose weekly forecasts I've been finding not only very inspiring, but whose guidance, suddenly feels reassuring.

She posts once a week. Arrow down and read not just your sun sign but also your rising sign.



If you don't know your rising sign, but do know your time of birth, you can look it up here.

xo

July 05, 2016

Surrendering Our Worries




Sometimes changing our life situation isn’t possible – or simply not possible soon enough.

This week's post is a snippet from the fabulous Marc and Angel Hack Life:

Realize that, somewhere within us all, there does exist a supreme self who is eternally at peace. Because inner peace does not depend on external conditions; it’s what remains when you’ve surrendered your ego and worries.

Peace can be found within you at any place and at any time. It’s always there, patiently waiting for you to turn your attention toward it. Peace of mind arrives the moment you come to peace with what’s on your mind. It happens when you let go of the need to be anywhere but where you are, physically and emotionally.

This acceptance of the way things are creates the foundation for inner harmony. The need for something to be different in this moment is nothing more than a worry, and worries simply lead you in circles. Remember, the same part of you that longs for peace is the part of you that experiences peace.

It is not complicated to achieve and is as close as your next thought.

June 26, 2016

Living in a Fishbowl


So here is the rest of the story:


I didn't want to write about this before as there were two other people chosen to have docu-ads made about their life, to help launch the new product. They hadn't completed their filming until now.

One of them is a mid-lifer up in Canada who is a outdoors man, fisherman, and who likes to tell stories and ride motorcycles.

The other person is Samantha Richardson Alday, who lives in Alabama and is 47 years-old. Sam is a colon cancer survivor since the age of 29, who has been able to change her life with fitness. The ad agency put her in touch with me, as she was having the same pre-filming anxieties that I had. The first thing I said to her on the phone was "Sam we are SO having a bizarre parallel experience." It was really good to connect with her.

So now that her filming is done I can divulge what I didn't know was happening during my own filming- (that I was very happy not to know- until after the filming was over):

On the first morning of the shoot, Lauren Sally, the creative director, took my daughter out on the porch and asked her how I was doing.  I think my daughter explained that I was a little stressed, and hadn't been sleeping well, but that I was basically coping okay. Lauren then said to her, " I am going to tell you a little secret and you are not to tell your mom what it is until the filming is over- when I say "cut" to the cameramen, the cameras don't stop rolling. This is when I will get the most candid, natural side of her."

Omgoddie.

So it really was like being on reality TV.

And even when the cameras weren't around, I very often still had a hidden microphone on me that was capable of picking up every word I said. Or at least John, the audio guy could hear everything I said (and probably did?). One time I came out of the bathroom and said, "Oh my goodness, you just heard everything that happened in there didn't you?" He just smiled.

I would also forget that I had a mic on me, as did Liz Caven, the production manager. At one point we paused to firm up the parameters of my contract/agreement with the ad agency, in privacy, out in the mud room and I imagine the audio guy heard this whole conversation(?).

Oh well- I guess he has some insider information.

But the story doesn't end here.

Remember how I said that two branding people came from the food company on the 2nd day of filming and sat out on our front porch?

It didn't occur to me to wonder what they were doing out there, but after awhile I did. When I looked out during a break, they were watching everything that was going on inside the house on a monitor.

So crazy! - but understandable. They were there to keep an eye on things.

When picking out what color tanktop  I was going to wear for the next scene, the branding people took photos of me in the two different color options, sent them to headquarters, got the answer and the color decision was  made.

Pronto. Just like that.

Anyway, I decided when I took on this job that I was going to be an open book. I decided to just be myself and tell my story, even the struggles that I have faced in life, like having had an eating disorder in college and what that was all about and how I struggled academically because of undiagnosed ADD.

So I am not upset about the fish bowl I was in. It was just part of the creative process. I get it. Being a creative person myself I guess helps me to understand this perhaps.

It's all good. I totally felt like I was in good hands and continue to be in good hands, with all the footage they shot of me and now own. Part of this is my trust in Lauren- but the other part is just my comfort in myself and that I am not someone to hide who I am.

But still- having my story land on the market in mid-July is a bit scary.

What elements of those 2 eleven hour days will end up in my docu-ad?

This I will have to wait and see-

and keep my fingers crossed that the great experience that I had, continues.

June 18, 2016

Day Two

It's been hard to sit down and write this self-centered post after hearing about the very sad situation in Orlando this week. Writing it seems so very frivolous, next to all the pain that has affected so many people in the wake of the shootings. My heart and love goes out to all the victims and their loved ones.

My heart goes out to all of us.


Day Two of the Shoot:

7am: We have an early start to the day. The night prior, before we parted, creative director, Lauren Sally, asked me what it was that I would like to discuss the next day that we hadn't already. Gosh...I thought for a minute, it was becoming hard to remember all that we had already talked about as Lauren had asked me questions, almost constantly, throughout the first day of filming- often repeating the same ones, reaching perhaps for new or deeper answers.

I finally said, "I would like to discuss the beauty of allowing ourselves to age naturally and the ebb and flow of a long marriage."

Scene 1: Cooking in the kitchen. While I have my hair and make-up done, Liz Caven, the production manager, measures all the ingredients into small bowls for the granola recipe that I am about to make on camera.

I emerge with a new hairdo, looking like the suburban housewife, that I am always trying to avoid being.

But I kind of like the new look.

After I make the granola and put it in to bake, I stand at the oven and Lauren interviews me in depth, for the second time. At the end she asks me what it is that I would like to say, that I haven't. What comes to mind first is how grateful I am to have been chosen for this project. That I've been writing Lines of Beauty for 6 years and am blown away that she found it and has basically asked me to tell my life's story. I thanked her for the acknowledgement. I am near tears at this point, probably with a visible quivering lip as well.

9am: As I am pulling myself together, suddenly the doorbell rings. I feel alarmed. Who the heck is at the door? Is it UPS? A neighbor? I feel as though we are all on this secret mission and have been caught.

It turns out that it is the two people from the food company, who are in charge of branding. They have flown in for the day, to keep an eye on things. Heading into this project they are one of the things that I was most worried about. Are they going to arrive in suits and be all corporate and controlling- and make me even more nervous?

Nope.

They are in jeans, and seem laid back and friendly. They unpack the new product that we are launching, go out on the front porch and I almost forget that they are there.

Scene 2: Product planting. The product is placed on my kitchen counter, in the background. I've never tried a nutritional drink because I've always assumed that they are disgusting- things that elderly people drink, that are full of crap. This one however is a cleaned-up version with lots of vitamins and minerals. I take a sip and it reminds me of chocolate milk. I like it so much that I drink the whole thing and stick another one in the fridge so that I can try the next one chilled.

Scene 3: Lauren then announces that its time to blog.

WHAT?

I am shocked, as this scene was not on the agenda that they had sent and my office is very messy and has not been cleaned. I'm temporarily horrified, but they push away all the tax papers and mess, and in an instant, we carry on.

Lauren asks me to pull up a few of my favorite posts. I draw a total blank, as I am so caught off guard, but decide to write into the blog's search box  the word "mom" and then the word "fitness". I find a few of my favorite posts. I get through reading the fitness post, which is about a very inspirational 92-year-old swimmer who I met, but when it comes to reading the post about my mom, which is about how much older people need to be touched, it takes every ounce of me to not ball. I pause and look down at Lauren, who is seated on the floor off to the right of my desk, but out of the way of the cameras. Her eyes are filled with tears too.

I take an even deeper breath- it feels like reality TV but it is all so real.

Scene 4: All 9 of us get into several cars and head to film a walking scene, where we meet up with my friend Brenda, who is a women's entrepreneurial coach. I bring along another friend's rescue dog and we walk around a reservoir, with microphones hidden on us. Prompted by Lauren, we discuss the importance of having close friendships. We also discuss where in life we stop ourselves from doing things, out of fear. We discuss many different subjects, which all seem a blur to me at this point. One thing I do know is that much of this scene is shot by the cameras at a distance, and Brenda and I almost forget that they are there. We almost forget, only until Lauren yells, "Turn around and come back this way!" or when she shouts out another question for us to answer.

Scene 5  1:30pm: No time for lunch- our next shoot is at an outdoor community pool. I am so glad that I put "the product" in a cooler and brought it along so that I can infuse myself with strength before they ask me to swim two lengths of butterfly at a time, over and over again. They have no idea how hard this is for a 55-year-old to do. I pretend however that I am temporarily 15 and manage through it, without my wheels falling off- thanks to the nutritional drink. They film me under water again here, as well as put a harness on me, where they connect a go-pro camera to my chest.

What the?

I am as happy as a dolphin.

3:00pm: We finally break at the pool for another take-out lunch.

Scene 6: Back at the house we shoot the scene, that will be the lead up to the run, that we shot out in Concord the day before. I come down from the second floor, stop at the bottom to put on my sneakers and tie them, do some stretches and then run out the front door. You'd think that this would be a quick scene to film but to get the camera angle right and not have me fumble when I tie my laces, requires many retakes, which I am very happy to do.

I know that we are about to conclude another eleven hour day and that soon everyone will be packed up and that I will be sad to see them go.

Before they leave, Lauren takes time to show me some footage of the the last two days.

It looks really good.

I suddenly feel like I am about to say good-bye to my new summer camp friends, whom I don't want to leave.

I  walk out into the drive-way, hug them, thank them and bid them farewell.

I suddenly feel as I kind of did back in 1988, after our wedding was over.

So sad to have the festivities end.

So I head-out and celebrate with Brenda for dinner, which begins with a very large, extra-dry martini and many olives.:-)

Next week's post-

The things that I haven't yet been able to divulge :-)


June 11, 2016

Lights, Camera, Omgoddie




Day One

Memorial Day 4am: The shoot is to begin Tuesday morning and I still haven't fallen asleep. Mr- Fix-It awakes to pee and I get up, hug him and say, "I am SO scared." After snuggling him tight, I am able to sleep for 5 hours.

Amen.

I awake, wishing that I could meet with a professional for a pep talk.

No time for that.

I fret that the crew has bought plane tickets to Boston, and made hotel reservations and that I won't be able to deliver what I think they are looking for.

But deeper inside, I know that I probably can.

Tuesday 2:30am: First day of the shoot. I awake for good after 3.5 hours of sleep and linger in bed for eons. I try to calm myself by reading.

7am: Finally I get up and dress in the casual outfit that the food company has chosen, from photos of different clothing options that my daughter and I had sent them. I force myself to have breakfast and then put on some make-up. I feel anxiously excited for the crew to arrive and keep telling myself that all I need to do is..... be myself.

7:45am: The director and the production manager pull into our driveway 15 minutes early, followed by a cameraman.

"Oh thank god," I say to one of my daughters," There is only one cameraman and they said there was going to be two."

I'm so relieved.

8:00am: Another cameraman pulls up in front of the house. Uh oh. It turns out he's the audio guy though. He seems really nice. Everyone does. Next, a woman drives-up and gets out of her car with some cases, one of which is on wheels. "Who are you?" I ask. She says that she is the hair and make-up stylist.

REALLY? I had no idea she was coming but am relieved to have the tired circles under my eyes taken better care of.

I go inside and wash my face and she gets to work. She has this funky little spray gun that sprays foundation on my face and other neat tricks that I've never come across before.

I start to feel more glamorous then I've felt since I was four-years-old, when I wore my mom's high heals, too many pop-it bead necklaces and her fancy lady's hat.

Photo by Danielle Keefe

Scene 1: They switch the green shirt that I had put on to a periwinkle one, because of all the lush greenness outdoors- the sweaty, periwinkle t-shirt that I wore when I cleaned the house, in the heat, the day before.

Scene one is shot out on our front lawn, casually sitting atop the picnic table with creative director, Lauren Sally. She asks me to interview her on camera. What a smart move. This I can do. I start to relax. Then she asks me a gazillion questions about my life. One of them was about swimming and it becomes immediately apparent to me then that I wasn't chosen for this docu-ad because of it, as I thought it was. I was chosen, I think, because of my simple mindset and lifestyle and because I am an active, outdoorsy, mid-lifer.

Suddenly I wonder if I am simple enough. I also wonder what it was in me, that convinced her, that I can pull this whole thing off from just having had a skype interview with me. How did she know that I wasn't going to be like a deer in headlights?

I feel at home with Lauren though, and trust her and can see already that she is adept at bringing out the best in me.

So I begin to relax a little more.

Almost.

Then another camera man arrives.

Uh-oh.

I think that maybe the first cameraman has to leave for another shoot.

This is not the case.

Scene 2: Hiking at the highest peak in our town, which takes only 5 minutes to summit. It's a family hike with Mr. Fix-It and our younger daughter. Easy peasy except that it is pretty hot out. The make-up and hair artist Danielle Keefe, comes with us. I ask her if she is here for the whole day. She says that she is, in case I sweat and need a touch-up or have to have my haired sprayed again .

This is all so surreal.

I keep feeling like I am in a dream.

Then the crew and I eat a late take-out lunch at the house, out on the picnic table.

Scene 3: Knitting in my studio on a knitting machine. Lauren, the director, asks me to bring down my favorite sweaters so she can pick one for me to wear. She chooses one that I knit in the1980s. I say that I think that maybe it's too boxy. She says she loves it, so I put it on.

Scene 4: Knitting-by-hand out on the front porch.

Scene 5: A running scene on beautiful, stonewall-lined Baker Bridge Road in Concord. There is a tractor mowing a field in the background. Some of his dust billows up beautifully into the late day sunlight. They take several retakes of me stopping and putting my sneaker up on the stone wall to retie it. I wonder if the camera will catch the little hole in my sneaker, where my baby toe is slowly making its way through.

Sweet & petite production manager, Liz Caven, stops the evening traffic, so that they can shoot me running. I imagine that people probably think her car has broken down and she needs help. It feels a bit like I am in a Hollywood movie.

Scene 6: Swimming at Walden Pond with a handful of my swim team as extras in the background, including Mr. Fix-It. When the team takes off for their swim around the pond, the crew does some neat underwater shots of me swimming. I am in my element here and feel happy that the first day of shooting has gone well and that my comfort level with the project is continuing to grow.

Then the crew stays to photograph the Walden Pond sunset and Mr. Fix-It and I stop on our way home for a big bowl of soup and a glass of wine.

I go home and tumble into bed and sleep like a rock for 7 hours.

To be continued.

May 29, 2016

And Then

I got the job.

Soon an ad agency, their camera crew and food company branding people will descend upon my life for 2 days to film a docu-ad for a well known company's new energy drink.

They found me right here on Lines of Beauty.

It feels very surreal.

Never in a million years did I ever think I'd be in a commercial, especially at age 55.

I am not an actress ( I don't think)- I'm just being hired to share how I see life and tell my story.

I keep telling myself this- that all I have to do is be myself and tell my story.

Sometimes the magnitude of what is about to happen though feels a bit overwhelming.

But underneath it all, it feels like me and the right decision.

But holy shit.