Disappointment & Arnold Palmers

Disappointment & Arnold Palmers *Sunnies ℅ LAMB

Disappointment & Arnold Palmers
*Sunnies ℅ LAMB

Today, I had the loveliest lunch with Christeen of Angeleno Magazine at Porta Via today.

It was the perfect midday break – filled with shrimp salad and Arnold palmers – in Beverly Hills in the middle of a busy week that feels more like summertime than February.

Today, I also received a little piece of disappointing news.

But, I have learned that I rarely experience any kind of loss without love or levity being born from it.

Sometimes, a dose of disappointment can end up opening up something as simple as space – space you didn’t even know you needed – in which something else can bloom.

As we move forward into this week, I say this for us all: “Let us peacefully let go of what is not for us, and be open to the possibility -and beauty – of the unexpected.” 🙌🍹🍹

 

I won the SuperBowl…of personal permission and freedom

The way I do the SuperBowl...

The way I do the SuperBowl…

As I’ve mentioned before, this year is all about balance for me – finding that elusive balance between work life and social life, and trying to carve out a distinction between the two when it comes to my career of being an extrovert.

Today was an excellent exercise in this.

I had to cancel Super Bowl plans for two different parties today to make sure that I could meet a deadline and finish some open projects before a busy week ahead.

I thought that I should just stay home and be terribly responsible, but my good friend Amy and I had made plans to walk and talk this morning. So, I decided to add some balance to my day, and honor that commitment.

We ended up going on a walk through her neighborhood of Larchmont/Hancock Park, and then, came home where she made a delicious farmers market-fresh lunch of veggie burger with fresh avocado toast and market greens with homemade dressing.

One of the most challenging parts of growing up is learning when to say yes, when to say no, and not regretting either answer.

As I headed home to write this afternoon, with a few taunting texts about missing the big game peppered in there, I realized that I was already a touchdown ahead because I had honored what I needed my Sunday to be for me. I may not have won a ring this Super Bowl Sunday, but I have won something much greater: personal permission and freedom. 🙌🏻🏉🏆

Puppies and porridge…and not taking anything personally

Puppies and Porridge

Puppies and Porridge

Porridge and puppies for breakfast – with a side of The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz before barre class this morning.

I read this book back in 2009, on my dear friend Trey Fanjoy’s suggestion, but reading it again now is a whole different experience. I wanted to revisit it because I especially needed a little reminder of that 2nd agreement:

Don’t take anything personally. Oy vey.
What are the 4 agreements? These:
1) Be impeccable with your word.
2) Don’t take anything personally.
3) Don’t make assumptions.
4) Always do your best.
Do you try to live your life this way? Something to think about before Saturday sweeps us away into the weekend.

The Serial Killer Living Inside Of Us All…

This picture is me kicking fear's butt.

This picture is me kicking that serial killer called Fear’s butt. Take that, sucka.

This is a picture of me kicking a serial killer’s butt.

See, this past weekend, I was asked to audition for a film. 

I was thrilled…ACTING!! My original dream that brought me to Los Angeles.

My costar from a short film from years ago said he wanted me to audition for it, and I was terribly flattered. 
In fact, I got all excited and then…I read the script.
The character description read:  “a pudgy, hard-looking 48-year-old diner waitress.”
Oy.
 
It never occurred to me of course that my friend might be asking me to audition because I was a good actor or that he enjoyed working with me. 
Nah, fear and ego took me straight to, “You CAN’T do this because it will be admitting that you are that person you were always so scared of becoming.”
While I’m CERTAINLY not skin and bones, it took a minute for my ego to have an absolute meltdown. “You can’t do this! You’re acknowledging your greatest fear.” 
And, that’s exactly the reason I did it.
Because: 
a) it’s ACTING – a field that literally hinges itself on being who you’re not
b) my weight/appearance is not my greatest fear any longer (nor should it have ever been), and 
c) I need to loudly recognize in my actions the difference between fear and reality, for it’s a mighty thin, often blurry line; and, if you ask me, it’s fine time someone called fear out for posing and dressing up like reality. 
 
So, I went on that audition, and channeled my Granny Alice, who was a diner waitress.
I even paid $50 to put it on tape. I wore NO makeup, a plaid shirt, and didn’t even look in the mirror before I went before camera.
And, you know what?
I lived. And, it felt good. Heck, it WAS good. Good enough to get the part?
Who knows? That’s absolutely none of my business.

And, sure, It felt liberating and all that.
But, it also felt mighty fine to yell “F— YOU FEAR!!” right in that sad, scared little guy’s face.

It felt so good, that I decided to break up with that little f—‘er.
And, in doing so, I’m able to proudly share my story with you.

So, here’s the takeaway for you:
Is there something you’re scared to do? Maybe you’re not doing it because it doesn’t seem “realistic” enough?
Well, here’s some REAL realism…

Do it anyway.

Fear is like a clever serial killer – the likes of Ted Bundy – and he has only one purpose: to look pretty and harm us, while operating under the guise of keeping us safe.
But being creative and daring – and dreaming? Well, that is ANYTHING but safe.
You must think of fear as a serial killer – who serially kills not helpless women – but any dream you might dare to dream.
I don’t know about you…but I don’t have time for any serial killers in my life, unless Benson & Stabler are hunting ’em down. 
Nope. I’ve let that serial killer known as fear kill quite enough dreams for me, thank you very much.

No thanks, fear. I’ll let you keep me safe and protect me from REAL harm, but, I will NOT let you keep me from my dreams. No longer.
And, here’s the thing I’ve learned.
I strongly believe that when you exert just a little bit of bravery into that dream energy, your dream meets you at the gate in spades. “Oh, you auditioned for that part that scared you to death and made you face your ego?” It says, “Bravo!!! I’ve got another audition for you as a reward.” Yep. That’s what I’ve experienced in my 9-lives of a life.
The more you show up – and you’re not scared to fail, the more you’re met with success.

 

Friday Friendspiration: Jolie Williams Augustine

Friday Friendspiration is all about living a life you love, within the life you have been given.

Today’s Friday Friendspirer, Jolie Williams Augustine, does just that.

Friday Friendspiration with Jolie Augustine

Friday Friendspiration with Jolie Augustine

This is Jolie girl to me: the totally COOLEST girl ever. See, I met Jolie when I was in 5th grade, and she was dating my big brother, at the end of their senior year. When you’re 11 – well, let’s be honest – anyone older is cooler than you. So, when I moved out to LA in 2000, and discovered that Jolie lived out here, I was eager to see if her “coolness” had, well, kept.

It had.

I have been friends with Jolie for over 15 years now – going from a puppy-like girl, just wanting to impress her (as one of my big brother’s old girlfriends), to a fellow woman who admires this beautiful (editor’s note: Jolie would never refer to herself as “beautiful,” but I think it’s fine time she accepts the truth), fun, free-spirited, thoughtful, generous, music-loving, and, yes – COOL – woman, who lives in this same crazy world of Los Angeles that I do.

Jolie and me…at a show, no doubt. I wanna say this was Counting Crows? Wallflowers?

Jolie and me…at a show, no doubt. I wanna say this was Counting Crows? Wallflowers?

A teacher, she has taught me so much – not in a classroom – but through heartfelt conversations, musings over mimosas, and dozens of hours spent boogeying down to our favorite bands. That’s probably my favorite thing about Jolie: she’s always up to dance with you at a show, like all good Texan girls should be.

I’m so privileged to be on this journey together with her.

That’s Jolie girl in my words.

But, this is Jolie girl in her own words.

May her love of life, giving heart, spontaneous spirit – and perpetual willingness to dance – sing some music into your life, today.

***

The Friendspirer: Jolie Williams Augustine

Creating space. I live in Los Angeles, and have been teaching in public schools for 20 years, and recently took a two-year break for various reasons. I am very good at “keeping with the program” and life threw me some curve balls these past 2 years. The loss of my parents left a weirdly-shaped hole in my heart. I recently saw these words: “Instead of asking why they left, now ask, what beauty will I create in the space they no longer occupy?” Whoa. Parents take up a very significant space. So with them being gone and taking time off, life has felt a bit unnerving – and very peaceful – but also has made me ask myself “what do I want to do with this time – and, essentially – my life?” This answer is a work in progress, as we all are.

The world according to Jolie

The world according to Jolie

On the “glamour” of teaching. I have enjoyed the lifestyle teaching has given me, which includes: watching teenagers feel awkward, making them laugh…and listening to them, making music playlists (see link to her playlist gift to you at bottom), and playing music in class, read and discuss literature and most importantly, yes, time for travel and breaks. Working with teenagers is far from glamorous, and there is no room for ego or perfection. Parents and teachers know this and I have decided that working with young people, although humbling, is also a profound gift, and the rewards are subtle but many. One of these is pictured below. A former student wrote this about me 5 years after I had her as a student. I am not sure she was in my class the entire year but it’s nice to know she connected to me and the class. She is now majoring in Literature and Medicine!

 

* A former student wrote this about me 5 years after I had her as a student. I am not sure she was in my class the entire year but it's nice to know she connected to me and the class. She is now majoring in Literature and Medicine!

* A former student wrote this about me 5 years after I had her as a student. I am not sure she was in my class the entire year but it’s nice to know she connected to me and the class. She is now majoring in Literature and Medicine!

On wanderlust: cool things will follow. I have bit of a wanderlust and thankfully, my husband of 17 years tolerates my wishes to go somewhere or come along and make it an adventure. Yes, I love hotels and massages but I would much rather go somewhere where I don’t know where to go, maybe the people don’t speak english and cool things will follow. It know that most people my age do have tremendous responsibilities but some have lost the willingness (and maybe have fear?) to try something new, go somewhere different or meet new people. Thankfully, I have a small group of friends who do enjoy going to music festivals. YES, the average age is 15 at these festivals, but there is something exciting for me in seeing new music OUTDOORS, walking around and watching all the people. Most people my age cringe at the thought. I guess my friends and I have found a way to keep it simple, be comfortable, stay hydrated! and still get our groove on.

Jolie, getting her groove on

Jolie, getting her groove on

Keeping creatively inspired & California love. I have found that meeting new people, going to new places, and getting out of my comfort zone has kept me creatively inspired. I find new restaurants, music, books and places that I may never have found before. I don’t get wrapped up in details of things (maybe, that’s not a good thing?) but I know that especially today, people have appreciated my commitment to having fun and getting things done. I tend to make music playlists for people I have just met and will take up an offer for a visit. I love showing people around the city and California. Visits to a Korean spa,hiking, eating our way to Joshua Tree, Boyle Heights, the beach and Idylwild are all on the itinerary.  All the stressing and freaking out about the small things get you nowhere. Read any book by Cheryl Strayed, Anne Lamott, Jenny Lawson, Mary Karr, or Joan Didion and you will know this is true. Throw in David Sedaris, Sherman Alexie and Augusten Burroughs and you have my humorous life teachers.

 

Jolie and her "little sis" from Catholic Big Brothers Big Sisters

Jolie and her “little sis” from Catholic Big Brothers Big Sisters

Little sisters and homeboys. I spent the past year volunteering at Homeboy Industries, a gang rehabilitation organization, as a GED teacher and it reaffirmed my passion for teaching and connecting with people. I’ve lived in LA for 20 years and I have grown to really love and appreciate the good and bad of LA. It is very easy to separate oneself in LA based on neighborhoods and jobs but I have found the beauty being with people who make up a very significant part of LA and California and are generally overlooked. I have also been a part of the Catholic Big Brothers and Big Sisters Program for 7 years. I  met my  ‘little sis” when she was 11. It has been challenging at times to know how to help but sometimes I just need to know a visit to a bookstore, museum, a walk or getting ice-cream with someone can be just the thing needed. 

Jolie at 15, who probably wouldn't have listened to 44-year-old Jolie…but should.

Jolie at 15, who probably wouldn’t have listened to 44-year-old Jolie…but should.

Dear 15 Me. I know that when I was 15-years-old (see evidence above), I probably wouldn’t have listened to advice from my 44-year-old self. I was having too much fun thinking of boys and listening to Duran Duran. But I would share:

1. Be kind to the kids people make fun of.

2. Live in a a foreign country once in your life.

3. You’ll find a boyfriend. Don’t worry.

4. Salads are actually good. Put down the Doritos.

5. Keep having fun even when you get older.

***Editor’s Note:
Jolie’s gift to you. 
Our first friendspirer to offer a gift to our readers, Jolie wanted to share her “Feel It” Spotify playlist with you all, HERE. As someone who has been introduced to numerous bands and countless songs by this music aficionado, I can say that it truly is a gift…so OPEN IT UP !

For you!! Jolie's "Feel It" playlist on Spotify

For you!! Jolie’s “Feel It” playlist on Spotify

Thanks for the friendspiration, Jolie. If we inspire one person today, we have done our job.

Jolie and Rosie

Jolie and Rosie

xoxo,
Dawn

 

Dear Dawn: “I’m 15, and recently had my heart broken by a guy I was in love with…”

From a 15-year-old reader, V.C.: Help with heartbreak

From a 15-year-old reader, V.C.: Help with heartbreak

Dear Dawn, I came across your “Dear 15 Me” and all I can say is thank you. I’m currently a 15 year old sophomore in high school and I’ve read some of the different advice from people and they’re truly amazing. I’ve recently just had my heart broken from a guy I was in love with ( or thought I was in love with) it’s been pretty tough, considering that we go to the same school and I see him around. After seeing all these posts, they’ve really hit me in a positive way. I’m just wondering if there is any advice you can kindly give to me, I would appreciate it . Thank you (: – V.C.
Dear, V.C.!

Thank you SO much for writing me!
I started Dear 15 Me to reach out to girls just like you, hoping that it would help make a difference.
Listen. I remember how hard this time is.
It is TOUGH. But, honey, it gets sooooo much better.
You have everything in front of you, and you have no idea all of the beautiful surprises that will come your way. And, believe me, there will be many.
Things you can’t even imagine happening right now, will be the very things that change your life for the better.
I personally believe that people are put in our lives at a certain time to teach us lessons at that time and to go along on this journey of life with us.
And, I also believe that those very same people step out of our lives when they are supposed to, to make room for better things…even if we can’t see them right then.
One poem, my mom inscribed in a book she gave me as a Christmas present when I was high school, has always stuck with me, and I hope you get as much from it to help you heal your heart, as I have over the years.
In fact, I have found that one line or another always sticks out to me, and helps me get through a painful time of transition.
Thank you so much for reaching out.
You made my holiday season, and truly touched my heart.
Remember this at all times, V.C.: 
YOU WILL BE OKAY.
 
xoxo,
Dawn
****
“After A While” by Veronica A. Shoffstall

After A While 

(Veronica A. Shoffstall, copyright 1971)

After a while, you learn the subtle difference between holding a hand and chaining a soul. and you learn that love doesn’t mean leaning and company doesn’t always mean security.

And you begin to learn
that kisses aren’t contracts
and presents aren’t promises.
And you begin to accept your defeats
with your head up and your eyes ahead
with the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child.
And you learn to build all your roads on today
because tomorrow’s ground is too uncertain for plans
and futures have a way of falling down
in mid-flight.

 

After a while, you learn
that even sunshine burns
if you get too much.
So you plant your own garden
and decorate your own soul
instead of waiting for someone
to bring you flowers.
And you learn that you really can endure,
you really are strong,
you really do have worth,
and you learn,
and you learn – 
with every goodbye, you learn…

 

*NOTE: I am NOT a doctor. I am simply a person, who is navigating this world and life, right alongside everybody else. If you have a question for Dear Dawn, please email me at DearDawn@BeautyFrosting.com. xoxo

*Lipstick pictured above: Tarte Cosmetics Tarteist Lip Paint in Hangry & Tarteist lip crayon in Squad

Friday Friendspiration: Alexandra Anderson Conrad

I talk a lot about these things:

Living a life you love.

Finding your bliss.

Pursuing your passion.

Carving out time for creativity.

Today’s Friday Friendspiration honoree is actually doing all of that.

In fact, this whole new column of Friday Friendspiration was INSPIRED by her.

Her name is Alexandra Anderson Conrad.

Friday Friendspiration: Alexandra Anderson Conrad

Friday Friendspiration: Alexandra Anderson Conrad

Back in April, I remember us sitting on a picnic bench at our friend Katie’s baby shower, and Alex telling me that she was inspired by the creative life I lead, and how she’d like to live a more creative life, as well. She was a new mom, a physician anesthesiologist, and she just wanted to expand her creative outlets a little. So, I think I told her about one of my favorite books, The Artist’s Way, and I sent her a little good energy.

Well, the story didn’t end there.

On Instagram, I started seeing her post more and more of her drawings of her creative little creatures. And, then when the new year began, I saw that she had started an Instagram account, @MCcreatures, reserved as an online home for her creatures and artistic expression.

Well, hello there, @MCCreatures!

Well, hello there, @MCCreatures!

I was floored.

She did it. And, not just because of something I said, but it turns out that Alex’s creative spirit is surrounded by creative people, and there is nothing better for a creative soul than that.

Here’s the takeaway: If Alex can do it, leading a busy life as a career woman, healer, mom and wife, so can you.

Alex: The doctor in action. Scrubs and all.

Alex: The doctor in action. Scrubs and all.

Here’s a little Friday Friendspiration for you, to help you do just that.

The Friendspirer: Alexandra Anderson Conrad

A little about your life: I live in Los Angeles with my husband, our sweet dog, and our one year old son. My husband is a musician and editor, so I am constantly exposed to his creative process and support. My baby and dog are rad too.

A bit about your career: I am a physician anesthesiologist. For the most part I love my career because it fits some very different aspects of my personality. It gives me my adrenaline fix, it allows me to be SUPER organized and precise, it allows me to connect with people and provide comfort, it lets me really get into a zone and focus, and my hair never has to look good (because it never does).  I am empathetic to a fault, which makes me good at what I do but it also makes it pretty difficult emotionally. I also have anxiety that I can channel well with this line of work- you want your anesthesiologist to worry about and be prepared for anything! Worrying about others lets me escape my so-called problems. It always gives me perspective.

Carving out time for creativity: I have always had a desire to create; to be a part of that big dialogue. My creativity was pretty squashed for many years with studying, emotional ups and downs, and bad relationships. I also have to compartmentalize a whole lot of feelings and thoughts, as well as creativity, in order to function emotionally as a doctor. I’m easing back into it. I am able to use my creativity in my interactions with patients and colleagues under intense circumstances. I have recently come to recognize this as a creative process.

Creative support and inspiration: As far as making things, it really started up when I was pregnant with my son (now 12 months). I felt this enormous pressure to work things out and achieve some clarity while shaping a human. I also needed to relieve my stress and anxiety about the pregnancy (I am a worrier) and satisfy a new level of creative energy. It felt very important to me to reconnect with my creative voice and artistic side before becoming a mother. I wanted to get back in touch with my wonder and weirdness, for him. I want to be able to meet him in the world of fantasy and play. So I started drawing. I started making stamps and prints. I started painting. I started writing. My husband has been really supportive and encouraging on my little reentry. He always reminds me to just enjoy the process, as I tend to fixate on goals and judge myself. He always has words of wisdom with regard to the creative process that help me to relax a little and just let things happen, instead of spiraling out trying to figure out what my end game is or whether I am wasting my time.

What's NOT a waste of time? THIS guy.

What’s NOT a waste of time? THIS guy.

Your creations: I have gotten really into drawing little creatures. It started when I was pregnant, wanting to make cool black and white art for my baby’s nursery. Then I sort of realized that I was putting my anxiety and whatever else into these little critters. I have a lot of stored emotions from both my job and motherhood, and it’s good to get them out in a positive way.

Creative discipline: I try to just draw one thing a day, or write one thing a day. If it sucks, I just try to see it as an off day. I try to ask myself if it made me feel better. I also love Instagram, because it’s true that a picture (and a brief caption) are worth a thousand words. It’s a good creative outlet when pressed for time!

What goes on inside that mind? Guess you'll just have to check out Alex's Instagram account, @MCCreatures, to find out!

What goes on inside that mind? Guess you’ll just have to check out Alex’s Instagram account, @MCCreatures, to find out!

Alex’s 5 Friendspiration Revelations: I am inspired by everything! The tricky thing for me is allowing myself to be inspired instead of envious or discouraged. I constantly have to remind myself is there is room for everyone’s creative contributions, even mine.

1) I was really inspired by Elizabeth Gilbert Big Magic Podcast episode with Brene Brown, especially when they talked about how unused creativity is not benign. Wow is that ever true. I also love listening to Ira Glass talk about The Gap. That is very encouraging!

2) I am tremendously inspired by my amazing husband who is so diligently creative it’s disgusting. Also, as an editor he has such a knack for story and getting to the important stuff. I’ve learned so much from his process, and his advice.

3) I am endlessly inspired by my amazing friends. I have really lucked out in that department. The women I know just blow my mind. Everyone is so open, supportive, hilarious, calming and brilliant. Where do I even begin? There are physicians, actors, writers, musicians, photographers, parents and just all around incredible humans. I have managed to surround myself with really genuinely great people.

4) I am inspired by my son!!!! Watching a baby’s mind be blown by the minutiae of the world is absolutely wonderful. I want to be on his level. Read the piece by Jason Lautenschleger about “How to Create Like A Baby”! That sums it up.

5) I love to be weird, aka, normal. I love to normalize being normal, especially in the glossy perfection of social media. I love to be real and connect with people. I think that is a big driving force. If I can reach one person with a silly drawing I made when I was freaking out about something, that is some real healing.

Alex being weird, aka, normal.

Alex being weird, aka, normal.

Thanks for the friendspiration, Alex. If we inspire one person today, we have done our job.

*Follow, and watch Alex’s creative journey, at @MCCreatures on Instagram, where you’ll see more little guys like this one.

Check out @MCCreatures for more of these guys!

Check out @MCCreatures for more of these guys!

xoxo,
Dawn

Christmas Card Truth Talk: Kill The Christmas Comparison Curse

Merry Christmas, y’all!

Let's stop the Christmas comparison curse, and adopt an attitude of gratitude

Let’s stop the Christmas comparison curse, and adopt an attitude of gratitude

My Christmas card this year makes it look like my whole life matches.

But, that was just one picture on one day, when I happened to put on a dress that matched my life, apparently.

Yep, It’s that time of year again – not just the time to hang the stockings, but also the time for these cute little Christmas cards to start coming in the mail.

This year I’m here to remind you of a little something: every time you look at these “perfect little cards with perfect little people or perfect little families with perfect little lives,” just remember this: there is no such thing as “perfect.” The idea of “Perfect” varies from person to person, and my ideal is not your ideal, & vice versa.

With every card you receive this year, keep in mind that you know only about 10% – 25% tops of what’s going on in these people’s lives and stories, and just a portion of what’s truly going on under their roofs. Don’t believe me? How much do people really know about you and your family? Mmmmmhm. That’s what I mean.

No, our Christmas cards aren’t sent to show our friends and family the reality of our everyday lives, with all of the struggles and challenges we face. They’re just there to show those we love that we’re happy to be here, doing what we’re doing, living the best life we can with the ones we love, in the moment we’re in, the best way we can, to the best of our abilities, on any given day.

So, kill the comparison and adopt an attitude of gratitude, and be thankful that those perfectly imperfect people on the card find you to be a special enough IMPERFECT person like them to receive a Christmas card. And, let’s take a moment of gratitude for what we’ve got right now because the known sure is better than the unknown.

After all, those folks you aspire to be more like might be dealing with struggles & challenges a whole lot more daunting than the challenges you’re facing. And, next year, you can also do what I – and so many others do – and donate $1 to your favorite charity for every Christmas card you send out. That makes every Christmas card a positive message in the world, and not one that inspires wanting more. You have everything you need, in this very moment.

xoxo,
Dawn

Sandra & Lynn…and Pamela: Body Image & Our Personal Power To Make The Choice

Today on my walk/run, I listened to my dear friend Lynn Chen’s The Actor’s Diet podcast from last year, and her guest was actress, Sandra Oh, of Grey’s Anatomy fame.

This perfectly imperfect fallen leaf reminded me of myself, and of all of us. Our imperfections make us beautiful.

This perfectly imperfect fallen leaf reminded me of myself, and of all of us. Our imperfections make us beautiful.

As I saw this perfectly imperfect fallen leaf on the ground, I found it to be no accident that Lynn and Sandra’s conversation about body image and the pressure of a preferred body type in Hollywood was playing in my headphones.

Lynn: “Do you believe the pressure to look a certain way exists…for real?”

Sandra: “The pressure exists, and the pressure cannot exist…at the same time. It comes down to ‘What voice am I going to follow?'”

Lynn: “How do you quiet that voice when it is screaming in your head?”

Sandra: “Sometimes, I give my voices a name, ‘OK, just breathe, Pamela. I can hear you, Pamela. I know you’re angry.”

I’ve heard Pamela in my head a few times too, I think.

Girl gets around.

I met Sandra Oh last spring, when we were both invited to a gifting meeting by a fashion designer, & our appointments were double-booked. So, we basically had to shop together, which some actresses of her caliber might not exactly be comfortable with. She was with her mom, who is beyond adorable, and to see them interact was the sweetest thing ever.

As the designer offered to give her everything, I was amazed at how genuinely grateful and gracious Sandra was.

There was no entitlement.

No ego.

No expectation.

Just gratitude.

I realized listening to the podcast today, how we really do have the choice of how we want to be.

Are we going to feel entitled and feel disappointed when life is short of our expectations?Are we going to feel let down by people who don’t live up to who we want them to be? Are we going to see billboards with women with less body fat – or a bigger cup size – than us – and then feel like less, or feel hate for our bodies?

I sure hope not.

And, I hope that more conversations like this can occur between all women and girls, so we can learn to calm those vicious voices in our own heads.

I also hope that when Pamela rears her head in Sandra’s head, she hears my voice of gratitude now.

Thank you for leading by example, lady. And, thank you, Lynn Chen & The Actor’s Diet, for giving us a platform on which that dialogue can occur.

xoxo,
Dawn

Life is like an escalator…

Oh, just me on the escalator of life...

Oh, just me on the escalator of life…

Life really is like an escalator. You ride it up and down and back up again, stepping out onto different floors, to take in all the options, only to sometimes find yourself back on the same floor you started on, looking at a whole different season of options, through a different pair of rose-colored sunglasses.
That’s how I feel about Nordstrom.

My first job in LA was at Nordstrom. I worked as a Trish McEvoy makeup artist at Westside Pavillion and Topanga Canyon. What I remember most is how I so terribly yearned for the day when I would “make it”… meaning that I would be working as a full-time creative, with no one to answer to.

Funny thing, life. Tonight, as I toasted the grand opening celebration of the grand new Nordstrom Del Amo – as a guest this timeout Nordstrom & the charity, Walk With Sally – I could feel that girlish spirit alive and radiating through me. I recalled such fond memories of kind customers, comedic quips of my counter co-horts, jotting down my dreams in my journal at lunch, calling casting directors on breaks, and just biding my time, yearning for the day when those days would be but a memory.

Well, now they are. And, I miss that girl. A lot. But the one thing I’ve learned in this cyclical little life of mine is to not be so busy looking for what’s up ahead, that you miss what’s right there in front of you. Look at each step on the escalator you’re on, even as you’re climbing on to the next one.

And, here’s a little hint: You ALWAYS have someone to answer to, not least of all…yourself. And, I’ve found that that chick is the toughest boss of all.

Thank you for a beautiful night, Nordstrom and Walk With Sally. My heart is grateful for our memories then, our present now, and out future ahead.

xoxo,
Dawn


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