Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Post Tomorrow for Under The Sheets-Shhh

You can make me take a break for the holidays, but you can't keep me from my readers!

New post tomorrow! Happy New Year!


Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays: Break from Posting

I just wanted to wish you and your family very happy holidays and a Happy New Year! Thank you for following me on my journey of writing and I am enjoying getting to know you and your inner thoughts. I know that 2009 will be a great year for all of us. My holiday wish for you, is to take a couple of days off and enjoy Christmaskwanzaka.

No matter where you are in the world celebrating Christmas, like watching Santa on water skiis in Florida or watching movies and eating Chinese food in San Francisco, I wish you a happy holidays.

Please forgive me, but I won't be posting for a few days. In lieu of my radio silence, I hope that you enjoy some of my favorite posts that maybe you haven't seen. Take a look and I'd love for you to comment on the different topics.

Travel: Travel Shots for Brazil
Beauty Tips on a Budget: Beauty, Life and Style
The Best Bagel Restaurant: No Holes About It!
Recipe on A Budget: French Cut Green Beans with Almonds, Lemon and Fried Onions
Dating, love and our relationship: Chapter 2 Work Friends First
Cable Car Confessions San Francisco Travel: Cable Car Confessions #3

Some of my goals for 2009 with this blog are to come up with a wonderful, short and catchy domain name to create a site. Maybe you can help me come up with a name like lululemon or NOTCOT ? In 2009, I would like to continue to write for this blog on several topics such as relationships, manic depression, recipes, travel and child development. Tell me, are there any topics that you would like me to write about in the New Year?

To my blogger friends: Here is my linking holiday present for you. I hope you like it. Thank you for being so supportive to me and to Under The Sheets-Shhh. La Belette Rouge, Georgie B, pj, Braja, Simplicity, Miss Musing, Cuckoo and Miss Anne.

I'll write to you soon,

Monday, December 22, 2008

Cable Car Confessions: New Years Eve

Ding ding all aboard. "Next stop Powell Street Chinatown. Tickets please show me your tickets please." At the end of December I start to look back at my year to see what was learned and what I could have done better. This is also the time of year where we start to figure out what we will be doing for this New Year's eve. Here is my own cable car confession from last years New Years 2008 in San Francisco.

It's usually hard for people to think that the cable car is my form of public transportation. Like all public transportation the cable cars have good and bad days. On the bad days, the cars have a hard time functioning like if there is a traffic jam or a cable car ran off the tracks. It seems that whenever it really counts and there are no cabs around, I hear the ding of the bell and I am rescued by a cable car and taken through San Francisco.

We brought in 2008 with some really good friends and their cousins to a party on top of the Bank of America building which is located in the financial district. My home is only 8 blocks from the Bank of America building and it usually only takes me ten minutes to get there, but because it was New Year's it took us thirty minutes. We were all dressed up, taking pictures of each other and yes I was wearing glitter and a red New Year's hat. Weren't you?

The party was at the Carnelian Room, which has a 360 degree view of the city, and usually a stuffy restaurant, filled with tables and business men having after work cocktails. For New Year's the Carnelian Room became completely different. The room was turned into a club, a poorly run club, with too many people and questionable outfits. We had fun, watched the fireworks over the city, danced until 2am and then started to feel claustrophobic :) Well maybe I just did.

Honey and I left the party at the Bank of America building at the end of the night. We left the party thinking that it would be difficult, but not impossible to find a cab. It was actually like Mission Impossible. All cabs were already taken or the cab prices were up so high that it felt like highway robbery. While standing on the street we were approached by a Town Car that wanted $20 to take us the 8 blocks, but the cable car was right behind the Town Car calling to us. This cable car was decked out in white lights, A New Year's sign and people waving to us. I thought "There's my cable car smiling and welcoming us."

We boarded the cable car and sat down on an outside seat in the open air. This was such a nice and romantic start to a brand new year together. We waved to the cable car driver and wished him a Happy New Year. He was bundled in warm clothes, holding onto hand warmers and his cheeks were rosy. He smiled to us and then shouted to the cable car next stop Grant Street.

The cable car happily pulled up the California street cable car line while the riders talked and sang together. When it pulled up the hill I could look down on my city and start to make my New Year's resolutions and be thankful for how far I've come. I held my honey's hand tight and smiled at him. I said out loud "Thank you for a wonderful year. Here's to 2008 being the best year ever!"

I am planning to spend this New Year's low key. I wonder what will happen on this New Year's. Do you have plans yet? Are you going to be with lot's of people? What do you think 2009 will bring to you?

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Chocolate Peppermint Bark Recipe

One of my favorite things to eat and make during the holiday season is Chocolate Peppermint Bark. What is it about candy canes, peppermint mocha's and peppermint bark that tells me that Christmas to coming? Here is a great holiday recipe on a budget for you to try.

You can leave this treat in some lucky guys stocking hanging on the fireplace. After the bark has cooled, I like to present this treat in a small glass container. Try to not forget the holiday bow :)

12 oz. of dark chocolate chips or white chocolate chips
5 regular sized candy canes
1/2 teaspoon of peppermint extract
Hint: To give the bark that holiday feel, you can add red food dye to the melted white chocolate chips.

1.Break up peppermint candy into little pieces.
Hint: To get the candy canes crushed, try putting the canes into a freezer bag and then hitting them with a heavy pottery mug. You can use the bottom edge of the mug to target larger pieces. Once the pieces are small enough, pour them into another plastic bag so you can sprinkle them over the melted chocolate.

Melt the chocolate. I use a double boiler to melt Trader Joe's dark chocolate chips. Once melted, add the peppermint extract and stir.

2. Pour the melted chocolate out onto a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and spread out with a wooden spoon. Sprinkle the peppermint candy chunks on to the chocolate and gently press them in with yours hands.

3. Place in the freezer for 5 minutes or until hardened. Break into pieces and serve or store in the fridge in an airtight container.

You can make bark with almost anything, including nuts, mini marshmallows, and dried fruit.

What is your favorite dessert that tells you that the holidays are coming? Do you think it's strange if I want to make Chocolate Peppermint Bark in the summer?

Happy almost Holidays to you and to your family!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Dr. Laura's Advice: Raising Children with Consequences

Have you ever looked into the eyes of a child and just known that they were going to have a difficult time growing up? As if the cards are already stacked against them? Here is a case that I worked on while I was a social worker in Southern California. I hope that you can see that positive and negative consequences work with raising children. I believe that each child is unique and creative; we just have to be unique and creative in working with them. Let me know if some of my child development advice helps you.

Some background on how a child and family agency works: Each week the therapists, counselors, interns and teachers meet to discuss upcoming, current and closed cases. This meeting is a safe and confidential place where children's names are changed. After a family would come to the agency for therapy a case file would be opened. If a child was recommended by their therapist that case would be introduced at our weekly meetings. We would collectively decide who would be the best case for each counselor and also devise the right game plan in helping that child and family.

This is how I first heard about "Mark". Mark was presented at out meeting as an at risk child. He was twelve years old, in middle school and was just suspended from school for picking fights. His parents were teenagers when they had him, got married and divorced before Mark was two. His mother was out of the family picture and left home when Mark was three years old. Mark was raised by his very young father and grandparents. During this time Mark's father entered into a gang and got into a lot of trouble when he was a teenager. He had been arrested three times.

Can you see what I mean by just knowing in your gut that it's going to be very hard for Mark to stay out of trouble in his life and to not have relationship issues?

The team of counselors chose me as his counselor. I felt for Mark and needed to teach him respect for authority right away. I believed that without having respect for authority, Mark would never fear consequences like suspensions, break ups, gangs or jail. Even though Mark and I came from two totally different backgrounds, we connected right away. Well, we did, until I gave him negative consequences for his actions. To show him positive reinforcement, I asked Mark to be in charge of some of the younger children at his school. I gave him the points binder and he proudly carried it with him every day. The point binder gave him the authority to give and take away children's earned points, with my supervision, and he was responsible for choosing a star student each week.

Building from here, I started to have individual therapy meetings with Mark's dad. I suggested that for Mark's sake that he start to try and keep the gang activity and women away from the house. At first this was met with a lot of resistance, but after seeing Mark's improvement in his behavior, his dad was willing to try.

I can remember the first time Mark exploded in anger at me when he didn't like what I had to say. Mark who was very short for his age, threw the point binder across the room, screamed at an entire room of students and stormed off of the premises.

I called Mark's father and let him know what had happened. The next day Mark returned to school escorted by his father and he was very quiet and apologetic to me. Mark and I were able to talk through what happened and began to work on his anger. He admitted that he learned his anger from watching his father use anger at people and gang members to get what he wanted. He promised he would try to keep his anger in check and continue to come to his therapy sessions.

Mark showed signs of dyslexia in class and had never had one on one attention at school for a teacher to realize that he had a learning disability. Mark's dyslexia made him feel slower and not as smart as the other students in his class. This angered him. After some testing and a one on one tutor Mark showed that he could learn, but in different ways.

Stay tuned for Part 2. What do you think will happen to Mark next? Was this a success story? 2 out 5 cases usually are. Have you ever known a child like this?

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Our Love Story: Our First Date

For a year before we kissed we had talked a lot. A lot about our lives, a lot about what we wanted to happen in the future and about ourselves. We stopped talking that night. We paused and started kissing. Everything felt so right. Everything felt so comfortable. Was the person that I had been looking for my entire life in front of me this entire time? Where do we go from here. And then I told myself to stop thinking, enjoy and keep kissing.

The following night honey asked me out on my first date. I was so excited to see him. Things had changed between us and I felt love and butterflies inside. I got all dressed up for our date, sprayed my neck with my favorite perfume, and straightened my hair. I was finally living my own life, living in the city that made me happy and ready to move on with my Honey.

He arranged our first date night...

My doorbell rang and I was a little nervous to see him. I asked myself should I kiss him right away or give him a bear hug. As soon as I saw him all of my nerves went away and I found myself kissing him. Our lips touched and we clasped hands.

The first stop on our first date was to the Bank of America Building to the Carnelian Room for drinks. The Carnelian room has the most spectacular 360 degree view of the city. I remember wearing knee high boots and a skirt. I will always remember the boots because they hit my leg in the wrong way, right where the incision from my surgeries are on my left knee. We ordered some drinks and I noticed how nervous we both suddenly were. We were gazing into each other's eyes and there was an awkward silence.

Honey said to me, "I don't usually have nerves... I don't know what to say right now."

So I said to my Honey "Then just kiss me."

After drinks I wanted to see the holiday lights and trees in the financial district so we walked holding hands. Then we hailed a cab where Honey had made a reservation at a Greek restaurant that overlooked a park. He had thoughtfully chosen a Greek restaurant because he had remembered a picture that I had on my desk at our office of the Greek Island, Santorini. It was a place that I have never been to, but is so beautiful, with the perfect pristine blue ocean, flowers and white buildings.

After dinner we walked to the park, where I noticed that the sky was glowing from a full moon. I huddled up close to my Honey and put my hands in his pocket of his jacket to stay warm. I promise that up until this day, neither of us had believed in public displays of affection, but we kept kissing while standing in the street. We were that couple. It was a perfect first date. Tell me about your best first date?

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Adults Santa Letter: Have I Been Naughty or Nice?

Dear Santa It Wasn't Me: I think I was both naughty and nice this year and would like a naughty and nice present from you. After looking over my lists can you tell me if you think I was good or bad girl?

This has been a great year for me which was filled with lot's of learning, love and laughter. And with only 10 days until Christmas, I was hoping that you could let some of my indiscretions slide. I won't tell you if don't! If you agree to keep some of these secrets between us then I promise to spread your Christmas cheer by eating a lot of candy canes. Deal?

Should I start off with my naughty or nice list?

Uh I think naughty of course!

My Naughty List

1) I've had impure thoughts. Very impure.
2) I didn't eat all of my vegetables on my plate.
3) I opened wide for the dentist.
4) I told my father to get his own slippers. Twice.
5) I might have said some unkind thoughts about Sarah Palin.
6) I swore too much and I don't feel bad about it, at all.
7) I might have put a Hanukkah ornament on the Christmas tree.
8) Forgive me, but I loved the 50 foot larger then life picture of David Beckham wearing only his underwear over Macy's in Union Square.
9) I spread the holiday cheer by having too many drinks at my work holiday party.
10) Vixen is my favorite reindeer.

My Nice List

1) This year I traveled to see lots of friends and family.
2) Santa, I promise to leave you "No Pudge Fudge" under the Christmas tree.
3) I listened and was a good friend to friends' and helped with their problems.
4) I pretended to be the penny fairy and dropped pennies as I walked down the street for others to find.
5) My room usually sparkles like tinsel on a Christmas tree.
6) I helped old ladies cross the street.
7) I raised money and gave my heart and soul to the AFSP.
8) I gave up my seat on the bus to my elders even though my knee was hurting.
9) If you get trapped in my chimney I promise I will help you out.
10) I did all of my chores and even enjoyed doing them.

Santa please bring lot's of gifts to my blogging friends. You can give them my presents. (Well maybe we can talk about that offline :))

Tell me do you think I've been naughty or nice? What kind of I present do I deserve from Santa this year?

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Our Love Story: Honey's Guest Post

My honey wrote this post to share with you about how he was feeling during the time we were changing from friends to falling in love. I am so glad that we can share with you our dating, love and relationship story of how we met... Oh and in honey's first draft of this post he called me a bulldog not just a real fighter :) I won in the editing room.
A few evenings ago, Laura, or more correctly, her lovely readers asked how I felt during our friendship phase leading up to her return to San Francisco. All I can say is that some things end up being too good to be true, like when you think you have chocolate-vanilla swirl ice cream and you find cookie dough nuggets inside.

As we talked about her return to San Francisco, my first concern was for her recovery. I wanted to make sure she had everything needed to get better as quickly as possible. Her surgery was tough (similar to what football and basketball players go through when they tear their knee) and her recovery was tougher. However, I knew she would be fine, because Laura is as tough and positive as they come, no matter what the circumstances.

She's actually the first person I think about when I need to push through to get something done… Don't let her pretty prose fool you, she's a real fighter. =) Actually, shortly after we started dating, I went to Peru and did a four-day hike of Machu Picchu. Mind you, this was two cross-globe-travel days after a weekend trip to Vegas for my birthday, with friends. My aggressive travel planning guaranteed a pretty nasty case of altitude sickness on the hike.

Just picture the following: I am hiking up in the rain to Dead Woman's Pass (13,800 ft.) on the way to Machu Picchu. I'm thousands of miles away from home, a fireplace and a cup of hot chocolate… trudging in damp socks that got heavier with every step as the socks grabbed every wet dirt clump on the trail, carrying a bag of equally soggy and dirty clothes and hiking equipment, failing to properly digest some half cooked rice and vegetables, all while struggling for breath… The trail guides asked if I needed the oxygen tanks to help me out. Somehow, I found myself being able to keep pushing knowing how much harder Laura was pushing to get better and to be able to walk again. I made it through the four-day hike and home to Laura.

But I digress... as we talked about her returning to San Francisco from Los Angeles, it became very clear at how close we were and how much we enjoyed spending time together. After our little restaurant incident (which she wrote about in an earlier chapter), there was tension when it came to talking about our feelings for each other. That was definitely frustrating for me. It was increasingly awkward that we kept talking about our social lives, sharing stories without acknowledging what was right in front of us. I knew we were going to be great together, but wondered if we would give ourselves that chance…

I found our conversations, especially in the last couple of weeks before her coming back to San Francisco, to be like a game of Pictionary. Normally, not one to read into everything, I would think through our conversations and wonder what she actually meant. Is what she just said a clue that she wants more? How did she interpret what I said? Can she guess what I'm talking about? Do we have the same vision? The game can be fun, but not in real life.

In the days leading up to her coming back to San Francisco, I knew I wanted to bring the subject up again, and I tried to think of the best way to discuss it with her. How would you feel in this situation? What would you have done? What else can I tell you?

Signing off,

Monday, December 8, 2008

The BEST Grilled Cheese Recipe

I would have never believed you, if you had told me that I would love grilled cheese sandwiches as an adult and that they are capable of so many different flavors. I am sharing with you a great Grilled Cheese Recipe that we like to cook with.

My honey introduced me a couple of years ago to the love and creativity of food. We have taken cooking classes together and I now enjoy preparing meals. I am pretty sure that when I was a child I was the pickiest eater on this planet. If it was green I wouldn't eat it. I had no idea what a balanced meal was until I was in my twenties. I thought a balanced meal was ordering in or making reservations! :)

Honey is addicted to Alton Brown who is a chef on the Food Network. Addicted. Recently he bought a cast iron pan. When I asked him "Why did you buy this?" He told me that Alton Brown had recommended buying a cast iron pan to make THE best grilled cheese sandwiches. "Uh" I said "Like the grilled cheese sandwiches my mother use to make me on Wonder Bread and Kraft cheese when I was a child? I asked.

"Oh, no" he replied "Get ready to be rocked."

I so was. This recipe makes the stale bread crispy but not hard. Once you take a bite you can taste the butter, cheese, mayo (if you would like) and tomato all melting together. The warmth of the sandwich makes me think of my childhood and before you know it I've finished the entire sandwich.

Hint: Try making a cup of perfectly brewed earl gray tea with milk and two sugars to ease down the sandwich. You can also dunk this sandwich into Auntie C's Tomato Bisque Soup.

Grilled Cheese Recipe

8 (1/2-inch thick) slices country-style sourdough bread
12 ounces Monterey jack, farmhouse Cheddar, Gruyere, or imported Swiss cheese, thinly slices
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 vine-ripened tomatoes, sliced, and drained on paper towels for 5 minutes.

1. Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat.
2. Place 4 slices of bread on a cutting board and generously butter the top sides of each slice.
3. Melt another tablespoon of the butter in the skillet; swirl around to coat the pan.
4. Lay 2 slices of bread, buttered side down, in the skillet. Put a few slices of the cheese on the bread. Lay the tomato on top of the cheese. Cover with a few more slices of cheese.
5. Place 2 of the remaining slices of bread, placed buttered-side up. Cook, without pressing, until the bread browns and the cheese is slightly melted, about 5 minutes.
6. Turn the sandwiches with a spatula and add a small hazelnut-size piece of butter to the pan. Cook slowly, adjusting the heat as needed to melt the cheese completely before the sandwiches are brown, about 3 to 4 minutes more.
7. Repeat with the other 2 sandwiches. Serve.

A great way to make grilled cheese is to use old/almost stale bread that you have lying around (e.g., "the bread you have leftover from the soup or french meal you cooked early in the week)

Have you ever tried making grilled cheese sandwiches with stale bread? Do you want to share and exchange recipes? I do. Email me at

Cuckoo asked in his comment "what was honey's feeling during all of this and how he felt." Stay tuned for Honey's Guest Post and answer on Wednesday 12/10/08.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

How to Talk to Girls: Advice from a 8 year old boy

On The Today Show Thursday morning, we were introduced to a fourth grader who wrote the book "How To Talk to Girls." Alec Greven, a fourth-grader at at Soaring Hawk Elementary School in Castle Rock, Colo., began writing the book "How to Talk to Girls" — about the dos and don'ts of dating — when he was 8 years old.

Alec who is now nine, was so poised and seemed excited to share his advice from what he has learned in all of his years as a ladies man. They showed him sitting in the makeup chair before his interview smiling and getting his hair done. He didn't look nervous at all and seemed like a pro.

One of his most important pieces of advice that he gave to men that are trying to attract the ladies was for men to shower and to not wear sweat pants. He learned this from his own mother who in his own words "was a girl once too." He said "Showering really helps attract the ladies and so does not wearing sweat pants. Girls want you to show that you care about your appearance."

Questions and Answers from his Interview

What inspired you to write this book?
A: I saw boys around the playground having trouble getting girls — just not knowing what to say. I wanted to write a book that could help them.

Do you plan to write more about dating?
A: I might be writing "How to Talk to Girls II" for middle schoolers, then part three as a guide for high schoolers, and then [parts] four, five and six for college and after that. I'll write them when I get to each age — I don't think I could get past security guards at a high school right now to do research ’cause I look too young.

Girls 101 Learn the Basics

If you are in elementary school, try to get a girl to like you, not to love you. Wait until middle school to try to get her to love you. Otherwise, you have to hold on to her for a long time and that would be very hard.

Tip: Most boys in elementary school can hold on to a girl for only 30 days.Whatever happens, just don’t act desperate. Girls don't like desperate boys.

So what do you do if you have a crush on a girl? You need to get her to like you.
You can also show off a skill, like playing soccer or anything else that you are good at.
Tip: To get a girl to like you, talk to her and get to know her.

Excerpt from the book Chapter two: Crushes

Many boys get crushes on girls. But it can be very hard to get a girl to like you. Sometimes it takes years!

I loved when Alec was asked if he was dating anyone, he said no but after he goes on shows like the Today Show the girls at school seem more interested in him that day. (We can be so fickle.)

On behalf of all the ladies out there I would like to thank you Alec for showing us that Ladies Men at any age really do exist. I know from my own playground experiences that we all seem like little adults and feel like we know it all. I can also remember my father conveniently getting my baby pictures out on the coffee table to page of my naked pictures of me in a bath for my young dates to see.

I encourage all young fathers to read Alec's book. Daddies be afraid of the boys and girls together on the school playground. Be very afraid.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

My Second Blog Award for being a Kreativ Blogger

Last week, Miss Musing awarded me the Kreativ Blogger award. Thank you so much Miss Musings you really made my day. I found out that you had nominated me while trying to keep warm in Toronto last week. You really know how to spoil a girl.

Miss Musings said that she felt I deserved this award because "these are some very talented bloggers whose creativity shines through in their writing. What I admire most about them is their ability to write in a unique and interesting way in a voice that is all their own."

The directions for this award say I have to list 6 random things about myself and then pass it on to five other deserving bloggers.

OK here it goes six random and hopefully interesting things about me...... hmmmmm

1) My last name was almost Odgen not Aston. I am the first born generation Aston. When my father was 11 years old he chose our name Aston, after his favorite car the Aston Martin, when my Grandfather decided to change our name due to some family dealings in England. (Which is another story all together.)

2) I truly believe in deja vu, fate and things happening for a reason.

3) I have been dying my hair for so long that I cannot remember what my true hair color is. I used to look like snow white with very pale skin, blue eyes and dark brown hair. I have been red, all shades of brown, black and now it's highlighted. Thank you to my family members for taking pictures of me as a child so I have proof of what my natural color really is.

4) I do much better in the cold weather then in the hot weather. I think it's much easier to throw layers of clothing on then to cool down after you've over heated.

5) If I could I would skip meals all together. I would just eat dessert or chips for each meal. Tell me am I alone in this?

6) I hate horror movies. Cannot stand them. I am that one girl in the movie theater that jumps every time a scary thing happens on screen. I even jump at scary movie previews.

Now for my five nominations for the Kreative Blog Award. Drum roll please....sure sure it's great just being nominated. Each of these bloggers have such a unique way of kreatively telling their story as they see and feel it. I keep learning from all of you.

Tag your it.

Mary-Laure for her Kreativ writing on Aurea
Braja for her unique and deep blog, Lost and Found in India
Cassoulet Cafe for her blog, Cassoulet Cafe
Roxie for her fab blog Baby,When the Sun Goes Down
Georgie B for his thoughtful blog, Cedar's Mountain

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Cable Car Confessions: The Pick Up Artist

Ding ding all aboard. "Next stop Powell Street Chinatown. Tickets please show me your tickets please." These sounds are very familiar to San Francisco tourists and locals. What is the one thing that you have to do when you come and visit San Francisco? Ride the cable car. What we don't hear about are the stories from the cable car drivers. This is their job. They ride in the fog, sun, rain, and in traffic jams. Here is one of their stories.

Here is one of my own experiences, as the last couple of chapters I have written have been about me people watching on the cable car. I would consider myself pretty wise to the pick up artist and yet sometimes I find myself twirling my hair around my index finger or blushing when a guy tries to pick me up in a clever way. And then the reality show became popular on VH1. Do these tricks really work? Can a guy really get a woman to start opening up and talking to him because of the way he touches her arm? I pride myself on being able to recognize this kind of manipulation, but then I found myself on the cable car recently being faced with a man staring at me. (Sorry honey.)

It was a Thursday morning and I was taking the 8:24am cable car down California street to Market so I could walk to work. The cable car was packed and I was carrying several things with me. My oversized purse, my laptop bag and my lunch, so I could save for my Toronto trip (I think it was left-over Shepard's pie from the recipe I shared with you guys earlier). The weather was around 60 degrees and the fog hadn't yet lifted within the city. (The fog usually lifts in San Francisco later in the morning.) There were no seats available inside the cable car so I stood beside the cable car driver with all of my bags at the window and held onto the metal bar on the door for support.

Now this might sound easy, but it's really not. You have to balance all of your weight, with all of your bags and ride the cable car. Imagine being on a boat and having to balance. First the cable car climbs up the hill on California street and then dives down the crazy hill all while I am trying not to drop anything or fall.

Over the years, I have watched to see how well other riders balance themselves. I thought that because of my dancer background I was able to balance until this man, let's call him "mystery" (the pick up artist), told me otherwise.

After a couple of stops people got off of the cable car and I saw that there was a free seat inside the car. This is perfect. I can get off my feet and get some warmth away from the fog. "Mystery" sat down next to me. At first I didn't notice him and was deep in my thoughts of what I needed to do for my meeting in a half an hour. "Mystery" then smiled at me. I was startled - is he smiling at me?

"Mystery" had dark hair and lighter eyes and was wearing a light blue shirt. I could see no eye liner or huge fluffy hat, but maybe that was because it was the daytime!

"Mystery" asked me "I have a theory that maybe you can help me with?"

So this is a typical pick up line that is shown on the show. I recognized it right away and thought I really want to see this master in action so I said. "Oh really."

"Yes, can I ask you if you are a skier?"

"A skier?" I replied "Why?"

"Well," Mystery said "I was watching you standing and riding down on the cable car and my theory is that you were a skier which is why you kept your balance."

I replied "Well, I was a skier and I was actually born in Canada."

"Mystery" seemed pleased that I was talking and offering more information.

Mystery: "A Canadian, but I don't hear that you have an accent."

Me: "I moved to California when I was a teenager, hehe."

Mystery: "I am a snowboarder and my theory is if people stand like a snowboarder on the cable car and ride it down sideways then they understand the mechanics of snowboarding. You were standing there and took the ups and downs of the hill and to me you looked like a skier."

I giggled, "Yes, I use to down hill ski a lot."

And then Mystery ruined it all by asking, "Do you work around here and ride this cable car at the same time every day?"

I was snapped from his grasp and replied to him "Yes, my honey and I do."

Stay tuned for the next chapter for cable car confessions will be Chapter #6: New Year's

Monday, December 1, 2008

Our Love Story: The kiss

We had finally arrived at my San Francisco apartment. I had waited 5 months, gone through a lot of pain and worked hard to get to this moment. Over the past months I had reevaluated where my life was going, found out who was there for me and decided that I needed to reopen my heart and welcome in a future... I had always wanted.

Future Honey helped me get out of the car and up the stairs to get into my apartment, before leaving to park the car. Once I had made it to the top of the stairs, I looked around at the familiar surroundings. Everything looked the same and yet different. "Chloe" helped me sit in my favorite, oversized, beige chair in the family room. Things were calm around me and I could hear the familiar sound of the cable car bell in the background.

"Ahhh," I thought to myself "I've missed those sounds."

I was finally home and then Honey walked in.

After catching up over tea, I realized that the football game was on. Chloe and Honey watched the game while I went to see my bedroom. Something that usually took me seconds to do took me forever - crutching down that corridor.

I opened the door to my bedroom and could see that there was a lot to do to feel comfortable again. I had rented my room out to a stranger on craigslist - my clothes, bedding and picture frames were all tucked away in drawers. Unexpectedly, future Honey followed me. He approached me from behind and gave me a "spoon hug" which made me feel excited and then also comfortable all at the same time. Do you know that the excited feeling? All I wanted to do was twirl some of my hair around my finger and giggle like a school girl.

The game ended and Chloe went home. Future honey and I went to my room and starting talking there for awhile. We laid down on my bed, stared into each others eyes and talked for what seemed like hours. I am sure I gave him my best kiss me eyes.

I kept thinking to myself, "Is he going to kiss me? Is this it? Does he want to? What will it be like?"

We talked and talked, but no kiss. We stood up together and I thought we were walking back into the family room when he stopped me in the hallway in front of my room. The hallway was dark. There was some light seeping into the hallway from my bedroom.
Future Honey pulled me close to him, kissed me slowly on the cheek... slowly on the chin... and then...

Finally..fireworks....future Honey had just become my Honey.

The kiss was so warm, so nice, so right When he pulled away from me and looked deeply into my eyes he said "It took me long enough."I knew my life had forever changed. Tell me about your first kiss with your Honey?