Monday, November 30, 2009

Post Thanksgiving Lazy Report

My mother is an undiagnosed paranoid schizophrenic -- undiagnosed because she thinks nothing is wrong with thinking that three different people, including the government, are tapping her phone. Therefore, a normal relationship is tough. For a while I thought the best way, the healthiest for her and me, to have a relationship was to severely limit contact. I declared to friends and family, most of whom fully supported my decision, "I am not Mother Theresa....if I was I'd be a better daughter to her and be able to handle the crazy talk..."

But, I reviewed the Landmark Forum a few weeks ago -- six years after I took it the first time -- and I got the major lesson again that I got the first time -- that I want to seek opportunities to give love, rather than shy away from them. So, the first big deal post-Forum was Aaron, my boyfriend, got to meet her for the very first time. He had been begging to meet her for months. He was thrilled, she was thrilled, and all-in-all it went off in a rather carefree, lovely way. So much so in fact that we invited her to Thanksgiving.

What? With Aaron's 16 and 20 year old? I wanted to protect them from the oddness, wanted to really protect myself from embarassment, and crawl under a rock. But, instead we ALL rose to the occasion. His kids were lovely and so mature. He was his consummate generous, easy self. And, I was really better than I've ever been with her either. I will say I had moments of internal freak outs when I found her carrying on quiet full conversations with the little voice or voices in her head while she dried the dishes, but I let them go fairly quickly because my god there really was so much to be thankful all its shapes and sizes, love, love, and more love.

We have a section in our book on Gratitude and boy oh boy when you focus on it, it really makes like so much Lazier.

Happy Thanks-Giving-Every-Day to All!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Trader Joe's Turkey Tuesday

It's Trader Joe's Tuesday just two days before Thanksgiving and the ultimate Trader of all things nut and cheese is out of pecans! What? How? Where? Is everyone in the Pasadena area making pecan pie? I'm sure I'll find some tomorrow but I just thought it was slightly hilarious as several of us stood before the wall of nuts cocking our heads from side to side, like puppies looking in a mirror.

I am doing a very bizarre and slightly un-lazy thing this year because we have a bunch of people coming to join us for dessert. There coiuld be up to an extra 12 people coming just for the dessert course so I am making not one, not two, not three, not four but FIVE desserts. But, the reason why this is LAZY for me is that I loooooove making desserts, love having a big spread to have everyone feast over, and oh my god I found some cool recipes: Bourbon & Orange Pecan Pie, Pumpkin Pie, Squash Cheesecake, Apple Blackberry Pie, and Aaron found a recipe for something he had to have: Turtle Pumpkin Pie so we're making that too!

On holidays you end up making compromises, so you gotta also do things that feed your soul...if you end up feeding the crowd as a by-product, all the Lazier for you!

Monday, November 23, 2009

More Lazy Thanksgiving -- Thank you God for FLOWERS!

I don't care how delicious or horrible your Thanksgiving feast turns out -- you can burn the turkey to a charred lump o' flesh -- but if your table is beautiful people will still remember your meal as being lovely!

So, here are some easy tips for making your table beautiful:

  1. Bring the Fall in! -- Gather fall leaves from the yard, wash them off and lay them down the middle of the table (or in the center if a round table) like a runner. Place baby pumpkins and squashes and other veggies like artichokes and fruits on top of the leaves. Put one vase in the center -- and if you fill the vase with little veggies or fruits -- grapes look fantastic -- it will look even more plentiful and gorgeous!
  2. Pumpkin Vase -- Hollow out a pumpkin, just like you would for a jack-o-lantern. Put a jar or glass inside it and put your holiday bouquet in the glass, so it looks like the "vase" is the pumpkin!
  3. Placecard Holders -- Make placecard holders out of pumpkins, apples or oranges. You can make a tiny slit with a knife in the skin of whatever you are using (or in the stem of the pumpkin) and put the placecard in the slit.
  4. Burgeoning Vases -- No earlier than the night before Thanksgiving (so you have clear water) fill a big (tall or wide) clear vase with baby veggies or fruits. Some of my favorites are baby apples, baby artichokes, or grapes. Put your bouquet of flowers in the water, using the fruits/veggies as oasis, i..e, to stabilize the flower placement. The flowers don't even have to be fantastic at all because the burgeoning vase contents will be the hightlight.
  5. Pumpkin Candleholders -- Dig a little hole in center of some baby pumpkins and place candles in holes.
  6. Individual Flower Arrangements -- Thanksgiving is a holiday of sharing and the table is always overflowing with food, so one way to add decorations to the table without forfeiting the center, and blocking anyone's view, is to make tiny individual flower arrangements. You can get creative with the vessels you use...just the fact that each person is getting their own little arrangement above their plate will make them feel special and "decorated"!

I always decorate the table the day before so I can really have fun creating the personal touches. You don't want to leave it to Thanksgiving Day because -- as we all know -- there are foods and people flying in every direction on the holiday, so you want to be able to enjoy it all, instead of stressing about the details.

So, remember this Lazy Motto: If it didn't get done, it's not important!! It really isn't. The holidays are about sharing food, stories, once everyone arrives, just LET ALL THE EXPECTATIONS GO and HAVE FUN!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Lazy Thanksgiving: Prep or Procrastination

Most people I meet who hear the title of the book we wrote boast proudly about how they procrastinate. We have a whole section in our book about procrastination, and the bottom line is this: it's LAZY if it doesn't stress you out. So, if procrastination causes worry, tension or general dis-ease, then we are NOT for it. But, once in a while procrastination, i.e, moving something down in your list of priorities, is a good idea. The question you need to ask yourself is "Will putting this off relieve stress or add stress?" Obviously that implies looking at short and long term effects. So you just need to stop, take a breath, ask the question and then make a powerful choice one way or the other, and then LET IT GO!

For me, with Thanksgiving I choose PREP over PROCRASTINATION because I really love Thanksgiving. I love cooking, decorating and having fun with friends. So, I do a little bit every day leading up to Thanksgiving. I get my shopping done as soon as I can, and have TO DO lists for Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday so that Thursday is truly enjoyable to me.

One thing I particularly love doing is setting the Thanksgiving table so I actually start on Tuesday night. I set the table as completely as I can because I always get last minute inspirations for additions to the decor. I even set out the flower vases, etc. and just add fresh flowers on Wednesday night.

When you do things over the course of days, it's very stress-free, and really does allow for more improvisation, such as running out to collect freshly fallen leaves, cleaning them and adding them to the table!

FLOWER ARRANGEMENT LAZY TIP -- Fill the vase with baby veggies, like baby artichokes, baby apples, baby clementines, etc. It makes for a very "plentiful" Thanksgiving look!

Lazy Thanksgiving Prep to All!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


I find my soul kicking and screaming right now. I just had my first full-blown perimenopausal symptom this weekend. It's undeniable. I got into action right away. Luckily I was on a mini vacation and one of my lovely friends I was away with is a medical doctor. I told her the symptom, a second period in a month, and told her how I've always been meticulously regular with my periods. She immediately laughed, and explained that it was more odd that I had never had any aberrations in my periods, and then basically told me not to worry about it.

The symptoms progressed after I left our little vacation and I started feeling weak and profoundly tired. When I told my boyfriend about the symptoms and started crying and feeling sorry for myself that I was moving toward menopause, he also laughed!!!! He said "Well it makes sense where would be some changes as I aged..."

No sympathy from either of them! LOL! Poor me! It was pretty hilarious and such a great lesson: don't take perimenopause, menopause or ME too seriously!

It really is just a change. It's life, like death. Change, death, life.

So, the bottom line is that surrounding yourself with LAZY people -- lazy doctors, lazy boyfriends, lazy friends -- who don't let you take yourself too seriously -- just makes being lazy that much easier.

Here's to my new adventure: lazyopause!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

More Lazy Transformation

The very cool thing about transformation is that when you start transforming really cool things happen around you. I took my boyfriend to the last night of my Landmark Forum and I got to tell about 250 people that I am in the relationship of my dreams, and that he is the best boyfriend on the planet. I really believe he is.

I had been working on "creating" him for several years, so I was very excited to finally find him. My only regret was not finding him over 20 years ago when we were both actively crossing paths when we both lived in NYC. But, as he says we found each other when we were ready to find each other. So true.

We just had our six month anniversary, and I've never swayed from feeling just profoundly lucky -- even during little growth spurts we've had, dealing with issues that have come up.
He is my most exquisite match, and as I heard a lovely British gentleman say about his girlfriend and himself: "We are exceptional together."

Being exceptional is better than even being great, isn't it. I strive to be a great girlfriend every day, and I know that he draws the best out of me. He is a stand for my greatness.

This morning, the day after he visited the world of the Landmark Forum and signed up to do it himself, he woke up and one of the first things he said was "I want to be the best boyfriend ever." I told him he already was. I don't think he really believes that yet, but I am committed to him getting that it's the truth!

The Forum is definitely a Lazy Woman tool, I'll tell you that much! In just three days the barriers to love start falling down, and the love comes pouring in. It's lovely.

The anniversary of the Berlin Wall coming down was this weekend too. Love-ly coincidence.

Lazily, lovingly yours,

Monday, November 09, 2009

Lazy Transformation

I had the distinct pleasure -- truly distinct, truly pleasurable -- experience of reviewing the Landmark Forum this weekend. I did it six years ago and it transformed my life then. Since I'm now in the relationship of my dreams, and have hit a lot of the personal goals I set for myself in the last couple of years, and as I begin this new chapter of my life -- the chapter where my dad isn't physically present in my life -- I thought it was the perfect time to review it.

I thank god for my aging memory because I forgot almost 100% of it over these six years, so I had the experience of taking it for the first time. Even though the distinctions have been working in my life all these years, and I live by many of them on a daily basis.

OK, blogerruption!!!

You are not going to believe this!!! As I was typing that last paragraph I was really stuck on the sentence from the previous paragraph: "even though my dad isn't physically present in my life..." I was feeling a bit sad as I typed and then I started hearing a beep. It sounded like my french press 4 minute timer, so I ran to the kitchen. Indeed it was right near the timer, but in fact it was my dad's watch. I just received it in today's mail from the rest home where he died. I had worn it most of the day but took it off to when I was in the kitchen. So, I guess he is still physically with me in his own little way.

The best part of the Landmark Forum is that after I take it I just don't want to avoid any opportunities for love. It's because of the Landmark Forum that my dad died without anything being left unsaid on my part. He knew I profoundly loved him and adored him, and I knew he profoundly loved and adored me. And, we both knew that nothing, nothing, nothing else mattered.

If you have an area of your life where you aren't fulfilled or getting the results you want, or you just want to kick your life up a notch, I absolutely believe the Landmark Forum is the LAZY answer to your prayers.

Here's to the Landmark Forum allowing me to truly express my love for my dad the last six years of his life.

Good night Dad.