Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Wishful Wednesday: positive and calm

On this Wishful Wednesday, I wish to stay positive and calm. I also wish this for you too my blogging friends. So much seems to be swirling around me right now due to my loved ones health and jobs. It helps during my gratitude walks, to remind myself that there's so much to be grateful for. I love the above picture for her serene and peaceful look.

This room would make me smile after I returned from a long day of work because of the open feeling. What's the favorite room in your house?

Assisting me in staying calm, I could sit on the edge of this pier and breath deeply while watching the sky and water.

I should just get this framed and keep it in my house. Ah yes the lovely bubbly would help me as well!

The Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco is THE place in the city that calms me down. When I visit, I feel like I've escaped to Europe because of its columns, architecture and ponds. If you get the chance to visit, remember to bring bread to feed the roaming swans and birds.

No need for words. If I stared at this picture for hours, it would remind me of love and positivity...

This picture was taken at the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park. Can't you just feel your stress melting away? By foot the gardens can be hard to find, but trust me so worth it.

If I was unable to get to any of the above pictures, I could sit down and stuff my face with these precious desserts for calm. What do you wish for on this Wishful Wednesday?

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Today's the day I start my book!

Where would you start to write a book? Would you start writing the beginning, middle or end? Or would you create chapters and then work on a chapter that speaks to you?

Throughout my life, I've had friends and family suggest that I write a book. And it seems like a natural thing for me to do because of my manic depression upbringing. Another reason is because I love to help and reach out to people.

I wondered, what's stopping me from sitting down and writing the book that is inside of me? Where does the writer's block come from? Is there room on the bookshelves for another book?

And then it happened...

I interviewed an amazing published writer who made writing a book seem possible to me. I gave her my reasons for not writing and she shot each one down. She encouraged me to use my voice and her advice to me was to start writing.

Just start ...
So today is the day that I will be at my local coffee shop 'starting' to write a book about my upbringing with manic depression in a warm, sarcastic and funny way. I want to recap my story in a way that shows no matter what happens in life, hope is still around the corner. Most people ask me, after hearing my story, how I kept smiling? I simply answered, that I choose to smile.

Today I'll start by writing one chapter and take it from there... nice and easy. Should I really take the book plunge? Tell me what topic would you write your first book on?

Monday, September 28, 2009

Diva dogs: stylish and scary

A couple of years ago on a Sunday afternoon, Honey and I walked into a San Francisco laundry mat. And to this day, I cannot believe who I met while separating my clothes into whites and colors.

Let me explain; I'm the kind of dog person that will stop while walking down the street to pet a cute dog. And dogs seem to gravitate to me. There's something about their warmth and big puppy dog eyes that make me stop. Sure I've met some dogs that are too aggressive or shy, but the dog that walked into the laundry mat that day blew these other dogs away.

As I started the washing machine, a miniature dog walked (or should I say pranced) towards me. She wore a Burberry dress with a matching collar. So yes, I was drawn to her as her outfit was way more expensive then mine.

Honestly, it was not even the dogs fashion sense that stopped was her hair.

This dogs hair was coiffed into a perfect hairstyle. Her bangs had been created into a perfect wave and her tail was in a ponytail. She also had an air of sophistication around her. I swear she held her nose up into the air as if to say, "Oh you have to do your laundry at a laundry mat, quel dommage!"

Even though I was judging (the statue) puppy, I walked over to give her a pat. She suddenly stopped in her tracks. It was as if she didn't know what a pat was. She hid behind her master and started to shake in her Burberry dog clothes. Her owner apologized to me and tried to let me know that 'Fiffy' wasn't use to being around people.

"Wasn't use to being around people?" I wondered.

Well my blogging friends, I don't believe it. It seemed that 'Fiffy' was completely comfortable around people. Especially her hair and fashion stylist. Comment below and tell me about a time you encountered a diva dog, stylish and crazy like this one!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

All the single babies video

Hope your having a wonderful weekend. Why has this baby sparked 'single babies' videos all over YouTube? Hold on as I go and shake my bootie and giggle a little. Have you ever seen a little one dance like this before?

Friday, September 25, 2009

Mona lands in San Francisco

Mona called me a couple of weeks ago. She wanted to see if she could stay the night at my place in San Francisco after her 5 day whirlwind of a trip around the blogosphere. The 5 days were to promote the new Moxie Media. Since we love having house guests, we rolled out the red carpet and invited Mona in.
Hosted by

Mona started off her day by waking up late because of her jet lag. She took her eye mask off, put on her fuzzy slippers and went into the kitchen to have her prepared breakfast.

After breakfast, Mona felt it was time to go out on her walk of the city and visit her favorite places.

First stop was Fisherman's Wharf. And though she was tired from flying throughout the blogosphere she stopped to look for the perfect postcards to send to her blogging friends. And look...she even found a perfect sized cable car just for her.

Next Mona kindly asked to hitch a ride with a local in Aquatic Park.

Here she asked a kind man to stop and take a picture of her in front of her favorite chocolate factory Ghirardelli Square. Have you been before? The sights and smell of the chocolate are to die for.

Mona was concerned when she saw this aggressive lions sign in front of the pirate ship on the bay. Luckily her superhero costume can double as a swimsuit if need be.

Ahhh...Mona is so happy to be back in her city of San Francisco. The city seems to welcome her back on a beautiful day.

Here's Mona on the Golden Gate Bridge. Well OK its a model at our local Trader Joe's, but she still flew there I promise.

And after a very long week and journey, Mona returned to our home to chill out with a movie and some dinner. Thank you Mona for coming to visit.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Laura's gratitude walk; check!

On Wednesday, I was having one of those days. The kind where you feel beaten up from life. I was finding it hard to connect with what I needed to do and focus. It took a friend of mine to remind me about being grateful. He suggested that I needed to take some time out for myself, every day. So today I am committing to walking every morning for the next 30 days, with gratitude.

During my walks, I will remind myself of the things I have to be grateful for. From my friends and family to the beauty of the San Francisco's nature all around me, to realizing what's good and positive in my life. Saying these thoughts out loud will make my statements more true.

This could be my form of meditating. In a way, I am quieting my mind from all the noise.

A gratitude walk sounds exactly like what I need.

(Cafe Gratitude is located in the Mission in San Francisco)

What can you do to feel the gratitude of every day? Do you think expressing your gratitude can help you on a daily basis? Tune in for tomorrow for my Mayhem & Moxie post as Mona lands from her busy week of travels in my home town.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Enter: The name that picture contest!

I believe that a picture can say a thousand words so here's your chance to enter and win The name that picture contest. All you have to do is comment below with the title of the very last picture and then link back to Under the Sheets-shhh in a post or on Twitter this week.

The winner's blog will be spotlighted under the smarties banner on the left hand side of my blog. OK so put your thinking caps on. Your title can be funny, cheeky, silly, sarcastic, clever or raunchy. To start you off here are some of my titles!

OK, OK maybe next time they'll buy me a Mac.

So this is what they meant about the birds and then bees!

A fishing rod would have been much simpler!

My wife would have really liked this day as well!

I wonder why women run when they meet my blow up girlfriend?

Oh crap, which cupcake did I hide the ring under?

Now it's your turn to title this picture in your comments below and link back this week. Go on I'm waiting... and will hold my breath and count to a thousand as you write your winning title. Good luck lovelies!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Explain a guy’s fascination with football!

Sunday football is back and I am surrounded by football on every TV in each room. Is football like the E! Channel for women? Why do the (forgive me) monotone announcers try to explain every play? Before you write me off as a woman who will never get the game, I actually do understand. I cheerleaded my way through high school and enjoyed paring our cheers with the game.

I started off my Sunday with Honey watching football on mute. He stayed glued to the T.V. until about 2:00pm screaming when a play didn’t go his way. Honey has also been known to break remote controls as he throws them at the players or at a referee after a bad call. I left Honey to watch his game (and no, I didn’t get him a beer) and called my little brother to check in with him.
I felt like we were having a one sided conversation. I asked him about school, girls, friends and then the usually chatty P gave back one-word answers to my questions. And then it happened - he screamed at the call in the football game. “Oh no,” I thought. “They have my brother too!”

Why do guys seem to go into a football trance? They are in the kind of trance I go into when I’m watching shows like: Dancing with the Stars, Project Runway and anything on the E! Channel (except for the Girls Next Door). The colors, the commercials and the music all draw me in. Can’t I just let Honey enjoy one or two nights of a game that he loves?

It just turns into more.

One game turns into overtime, which leads to fantasy football leagues, and then Sportscenter and Bill Simmons recaps. And then I hear all this random trivia, like how certain players have to wear sweatpants because his legs are so huge, he can’t fit into any other pants etc. I must admit that I can also surprise my football-addicted friends. While we’re watching the game, they leave the room to grab something. I recap the last plays. Well, I have to have some things up my sleeve? Can you explain to me a guy’s fascination with football?

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Weekend peace from San Francisco!

I'm spending this weekend at a friend's wedding. They are getting married in a little town about a half an hour away from Santa Cruz, Ca. I'm excited to get out of the city for some peace. Yes, sometimes its great to walk away from the hustle and bustle of San Francisco. I was already looking forward to the wedding festivities and then I saw where the wedding is taking place. In a little cottage, nestled around nature, flowers and green. Just lovely!

Thank you to everyone for your honest and open comments about the last Should I change my name after I get married post. I loved reading about how you handled changing your name. Some of you hyphenated, changed your maiden name to your middle name and/or combined both last names. It was JMW's advice from the bog A place to dwell that has stuck with me. She said, "A person once pointed out to me that you can either take your husband's name or keep your father's name - we live in a very patriarchal society. That's one way to see it." Have a wonderful weekend all.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Should I change my name after I get married?

He drops to a knee, places a shiny ring on your finger and you ride off into the sunset together. Well things can be a little different in today’s world. Suddenly, now that you’re engaged, you’re faced with life questions about combining finances, responsibility for chores, how to discipline your future children and whether to take his name.

After 30+ years of living independently, I am suddenly faced with the question: do I change my last name after I get married? Could changing the woman’s last name be an archaic tradition in today's society? This must have been thought up by men to show possession over their new prize. Hasn’t anyone thought about the engaged couple choosing an entirely new last name for their new family?

OK, I’m done with my women liberation thoughts - the next set of thoughts are a little more realistic.

First, there is something so right about becoming a family after you say I do. Wouldn't it be wonderful to walk along in life beside your partner sharing one name. Wouldn't this also make life a lot simpler? Hotels, restaurants, offices and social situations would all know that you were married, just by being introduced as Mr. and Mrs. R. (Check out this site to help aid in the transition of name changing called

If I don’t change my last name then my (phantom/future) children will not have the same name as me, their mother. Will the postman get confused with the two different last names on the mailbox? I understand women wanting to keep their maiden last name, especially if they’ve established themselves professionally. By making the decision to change, you’re starting off with a completely new identity. One that says, "I’m taken. See the bling?"

Finally, women have the option to hyphenate their last name. If I hyphenated, this would mean; my last name would be 14 letters long. I would be going from a 5 letter last name to 14 letters long. I may as well have a stamp made for when I’m signing checks for bills.

Sure, I have a 8 or 9 months to decide if I’m going to change my last name, but I’ve lived with my current one all this time. And don’t tell anyone, but I kind of like it. How do you feel about changing your name for marriage? How did it feel when you changed your name? What route did you do down? ~Signing off Laura A