the thing i can finally talk about

or, how i’ve learned to cope with saying “i’m leaving my full time job and focusing all of my time and energy on my business.”

MY. BUSINESS. those are actual words i say and they MEAN SOMETHING. whuuuuuuuuuut.

so, here’s a thing. i’m leaving my full time job, one that i’ve enjoyed a solid 90% of the time, and striking out on my own. i’m growing my own small business, starglass media, specializing in website builds, social media strategy and management, and email marketing for entrepreneurs, small businesses, and nonprofits. yes. that is the thing i’m doing.

you wouldn’t think a sentence carries so much weight but whoa, you’re wrong. it’s so many things. let’s start with some history.

a year and a half ago, maybe longer, i got an itch. i thought that maybe it was time for a change. i looked around at other positions and some of them seemed awesome, but i couldn’t get excited about them. the thought of trudging into an office on someone else’s time for the rest of forever felt stifling, even for a job i might love doing.

and i remembered of all of the inspiring people i know who have made a self-employed life work for them, and i thought of how i had always felt leagues behind them, different from them, and i thought about why. was i really so different? (no) did my skills translate to freelance and consulting work? (yes) what was stopping me? (fear)

i was fortunate enough to begin these conversations with two amazing entrepreneurial friends, a married couple for whom I’d sign on to be a sister wife if we were all into that. they were my own incubator, my encouragers, my first clients, and my teachers and mentors. last year, i took on 5 clients and made an extra $5k, working on top of my full time job – one month, it was two separate projects and 25 hours, including a week’s vacation with no work. it was exhausting, and though i originally envisioned doing it for at least a year, i burnt out quickly. some will tell you you have to run yourself until midnight every day and all weekend and i’ll be totally real; i could not do that without completely mentally cracking. so i took a break, in the fall of 2013, with an intention to re-evaluate in the new year.

sure enough, early on in 2014, the itch came back and i decided it had to be time. i’d just gotten myself out of debt, i was in a great position to save, and i finally felt like I had to try. like the risk of going splat was worth jumping off the cliff. i put my feelers out for clients again, i started swimming in new opportunities (not all of which were a good fit. learning to have uncomfortable conversations, check!), i fired myself back up and got back in the game. i slowly told the people who mattered most and have always been trusted advisors to me. i drank up their encouragement, and it sustained me. i set a date. i took care of medical concerns while i still have health insurance. i socked away money like it was penicillin before the apocalypse.

and here i am, three-ish months after that decision (it feels longer). i’ve told my co-workers and turned in a resignation letter and set an end date (july 31st). i sat down with the HR department and tied up my loose ends.

this is happening, this is real. i waver every day between thinking i’m going to be living in a cardboard box by the end of the year and imagining my jetsetter, world traveler life, working in quaint coffee shops and by hotel pools. i know i’ll probably land somewhere in the middle of that. i’m happy that i can finally share this – it’s been the most inspiring thing, creatively, that i’ve encountered in a very long time. i hope with all of me that it stays that way, and that you stick around for the rest of the ride.

gratitude, volume 1

i was asked by amanda a few weeks ago to participate in #30daysofthanks, which is a thing that goes around these grand interwebs every november. i didn’t answer, for a few reasons. the first is that i was traveling, which is not my natural state and not all that easy for me (so much worry, so many things to do and take care of). the second is that i’m pretty bad at gratitude (but that’s probably all the more reason why i should practice it). the third is that i have been really deep in the hole of feelings. i have a whole post written about that, and we’ll see if it sees the light of day.

today, however, has been a blessed reprieve. i have had a glorious brooklyn autumnal morning and early afternoon, and since we are ten days into the gratitude project, i can come up with 10 things i am grateful for. also, i like lists.

1. my king size memory foam bed. yep. this is shallow. i’m ok with that. every single time i travel, i am super grateful to come home to my bed which is made of pure awesome. the bouncer is bouncer sized and in order to avoid nightly smotherings i demanded a king size bed. when we came up with a memory foam for $500 on amazon, we were sold. at least three times a week, we audibly sigh with relief and joy while sinking into the bed at the end of the night.

2. my work, and my coworkers. i’m fortunate enough to have a job i really like, most days, with people who make me smile and laugh, all of the days. i love that i work for a cause, i love that my natural talents are involved in my work. there are days, especially recently, where it is astonishingly difficult to make myself get out of bed. it’s a little easier knowing i’m about to spend 8 hours at a place that i’m usually really fond of.

3. lessons and realizations, even if they are old news. most of the time, i’m pretty sure no one likes me. and you know, i’m kind of safe and comfortable in that place – i would open myself to disappointment if i did think that i was likable and then no one liked me, so it’s just much easier to presume the worst and get on with life. but i forget that we are not robots, i especially am not a robot, and that kind of life, it hurts all of the time. so when i step outside of a bar, where a very sweet and cool and nice person is hosting a meetup with lots of other sweet, cool, and nice people, and i look down at myself and think, “remember, you are not like them. you are different and they will never appreciate you, because you’re not worthy,” and i can reverse that and answer myself and say, “no. you are all living, breathing humans who work to earn money and laugh and have dreams, and you are not all that different, and you know, everyone’s been really nice to you so maybe your bullshit self talk is exactly that, bullshit.” this, this is a good moment, if i can believe this for a second or a minute or maybe even an hour.

4. saying fuck it, and moving on. some things are not worth your time. some actions are inexplicable, some cruelties will never be explained. we all experience this world differently, and sometimes you just won’t get why person x did thing y. and you know what? when that thing is mean, when it hurts you, when you even suspect that you aren’t worthy of that treatment, when you try to handle it the mature way with communication and openness and vulnerability and it just doesn’t work, you are so allowed to say fuck it and move along. as a matter of fact, i encourage you to do so. it’s freeing.

5. tea. what the hell did i do before i was a tea drinker?

6. the circumstances that conspired to have me in a 2,500 square foot mansion in beverly hills for a week. i mean, it took a lot to make this happen. one of the bouncer’s friends was getting married near LA. he was a groomsman, and so were many of his/our friends. hotels nearer to the wedding were pricey. blahblity blah. at the end of the day, seven of us booked this giant, five bedroom, four bathroom, fancy ass house for a week. there was a pool and a hot tub and a full set of wine glasses and truly, this was all i needed. LA would never have been on my “places i need to go” list, and i can think of more desirable to me vacations to take with the money i spent on this trip, but really, i had an amazing time in a new and fascinating place with people i knew but had never gotten to bond with. really, that’s pretty awesome.

7. my boyfriend. this is sappy and you can feel free to skip it, and i will not blame you because other people’s sap is usually boring. i am never going to be accused of being the easiest person to love or live with or hell, spend more than an hour with. in the past three weeks, he has held me when i’ve been sobbing, probably past the point when his arms fell asleep. he’s dealt with me going from fine to really not fine in less than five seconds (i am not exaggerating). he has managed my intense and irrational frustration and anger with grace. he has never even raised his voice, at me. he tries every single day to let me know how much he cares, he asks me every morning how i am feeling, and that means how i am really feeling, and he pets my head every night until i fall asleep. we are not perfect and we have our hurdles but god, i can’t imagine how my heart would fare without him. i can’t. (and this is not an easy thing for me to admit to myself or you, so).


9. new york bagels. and maybe bacon cream cheese.

10. the internet.  fairly self explanatory, no? where else can i find new friends, buy household supplies and groceries, and look at cat videos?


#augustbreak – days 11-13

is it cheating to use instagram pictures? i hope not. i am an android girl and i nearly whooped for joy when instagram FINALLY came out for android, but i had no idea how much it would spark my creativity and make me appreciate the inspirational within the mundane. most fridays, my job has wine time at about 5:30, and i was two glasses into the evening walking home, and snapped these. they’re all within 50 feet of my house – the flower is down the block, the white building behind the little tree is mine, and the closeup is the stairs to my front door.

day 11

day 12

day 13

#augustbreak – days 7-10

i’m still behind, i know. but while i can fill in the gaps, i will. catching up to come, as always.

day 7

in the winter i caught a bitch of a sickness and i was in bed for days. i had been aching to go to the park and play with my camera in the cold light – it’s different in winter, thinner, trees bare and i wanted to capture it. i begged the bouncer for a walk through the park before i was really ready, and it was bitter cold, and i didn’t last long. but this was one of the shots i got.

probably my favorite from coney island day with tiff and nick, when they visited. i laid on the ground in a dress that was way too short for me to do so to grab this, and it could use some editing but i love it.

 here in brooklyn every year, there is a cherry blossom festival at the botanic gardens, which i can walk to if i so choose. i forget, sometimes, how lucky i am for this. the festival is always very crowded and neither the bouncer or i are fond of crowds, so i watched the little guide on the gardens’ website this year and we went when the first trees bloomed. i have better, clearer shots of the blossoms, but this one, i loved.

this one – it makes my heart smile. that is so cheesy, and i’m sorry. i don’t treat myself to random impulses often (except when onyi is in town and then all bets are obviously off), but while grocery shopping at the fancy supermarket in the better neighborhood in the spring, i fell in love with this tiny daffodil plant. tiny! daffodils! i think i was not using my macro setting here, but i remember being home from work one day alone, and knowing i needed to grab the light coming in the window. the true part that is happy, though, is that when the bouncer saw how giddy i was over this, he surprised me with three more plants. sometimes, he is the sweetest.

#augustbreak – days 1-6

August Break 2012
fooled you, didn’t i? you thought because it was august 6th and i had no photos that i wasn’t participating. this was all a cleverly designed trick…

day 1

My D - from Kim

i thought it was only fitting that my first photo be a gift from my friend that
originally introduced the idea of the august break to me.
Kim sent this to me last year, and i love it. it hangs in my corner of me things, above my dresser.

day 2

another gift, from the actress. i can’t remember if i posted about this one
in last year’s august break, but the text reads, “she learned to cup
possibility in her hands”. it reminds me every day to try not to be afraid.

day 3 

a stack of quarters. playing with aperture on my camera.

day 4 

Trash - Coney Island

part of the reason for my late start is having some amazing guests in town.
we spent a long, hot, fun day down at coney island, and this is one of the trash
cans on the boardwalk.

day 5

my necklaces, hanging from a stand my friend jamie got me a few christmases ago.

day 6 

Beach moss

 beach moss, growing on the wood before the jetty, coney island.


still tired, but now there’s food.

so, i talked about being really worn out, and i am addressing that by spending a lot of time at home, resting. usually in bed. bed is my favorite place in the house – our living room/kitchen (yes, it is all one room) only contains kitchen chairs and a futon that doesn’t lend itself to comfortable sofa time, whereas my bed is a king size memory foam wonder of science. 80% of the time i am in bed, i am on my computer, and with ALL of that time, i find myself drifting back to pinterest.

i was super into pinterest when it first emerged, and then it opened up to the world and GAH, all of the bad pinning. cell phone pictures of children, unstyled and poorly lit pictures of food, ALL OF THOSE FUCKING QUOTES, and the offensive thinspo. pinterest got overrun, in my estimation, and became a land of anxiety to me. but still, when i have time on my hinds, moth to a flame.

Movie night treat: Marshmallow Caramel Popcorn.  1/2 c. brown sugar  1/2 c. butter  9-10 marshmallows  12 c. popcorn.   Microwave brown sugar and butter for 2 minutes. Add marshmallows. Microwave until melted, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Pour over popcorn.

even though i was to be resting, i got really inspired by some food pins. saturday night, chris and i settled in to watch studio 60 on the sunset strip, because i am taking him on a grant tour of aaron sorkin and he is loving every second. i decided to make this (decadent and very unhealthy) marshmallow popcorn. you could follow the link, or i could just tell you that it’s melted butter, brown sugar, and marshmallow, mixed up and dumped over some popcorn, and then mixed again. guys, it is the salty/sweet fat kid treat of the CENTURY. loved.

Sausage Breakfast Cups

the next morning, i saw these sausage and egg biscuit cups. again, you could follow the link, or i could tell you that it’s a grands biscuit pressed into a muffin tin and filled with scrambled egg and sausage, then baked so it’s all those goodies in a happy little biscuit cup. here’s a thing about me. i have Feelings about, well, i never know the right word for it, but let’s go with authenticity. i like taking something (especially with cooking) back to it’s most basic form, doing as much from scratch as possible, and i don’t like to use premade things (like grands biscuits). so i whipped up some buttermilk biscuit dough (a longtime goal) and used that instead. this turned it into a breakfast that took way too long to make on a sunday morning, but it WAS delicious. it also introduced me to sausage gravy (“why are they having me put flour and milk in the saus…ohhhhhh look at that, GRAVY”), which is a joy and delight.

Pinned Image

i did some formal menu planning this week, and i had my eye on this chicken with sundried tomato and basil sauce. for work nights, i try to keep things quick and pretty easy, and this fit the bill. i mean, my mind is still blown that delicious cream sauce is just flour, butter, and milk or cream, but whatever, i will take it. the whole thing took me less than a half an hour and it was delicious. (please reference my tweet about eating the cream sauce out of the pan, thus negating any calories i may have saved by eating a side salad instead of the pasta)

No Bake Energy Bites...sounds pretty tasty.

also on the week’s bill was the no bake energy bites that traversed the paleo/pinterest world a while back, and i finally wrote on my grocery list to get ground flaxseed, so i whipped them up after dinner. they’re still chilling and waiting to be rolled into balls, but i tried a bit and WOW YUM YAY. they’re not calorically amazing, however, it’s awesome to have a snack or dessert treat that doesn’t involve white sugar and flour, so i’ll take it.

Date night jar

bonus pinterest project: the date night jar. i didn’t find this on pinterest, germana kindly linked to it from the twitters, but it was a pin. the bouncer and i were doing well at having a regular date night for a few months, then life got busy and we fell off. also, we were getting bored with just dinner and the occasional movie. so now we have this clever little jar with color coded sticks for expensive dates, cheap dates, and at home dates. i am actually really excited to get started on attacking them, because we have thought of some fun shit.

and now, i’m coming up on five days of vacation (!!!), and my pinspiration (baby jesus, did i really just say that) list only grows.


a spark. a trace. something left to ignite.

the internet machine has been responsible for some of my closest relationships. we strip down bare in this space in a way that we rarely do anywhere else, we reveal in a way that speaking doesn’t allow us to. i have found a venue of sharing and expression that i couldn’t imagine in any other place. the power of this space, the power of sharing and connection – these are concepts i can never quite wrap my mind entirely around, they amaze me in such a huge way.

last fall and winter, the seeds of this were born. kim was the first to say, maybe we can do our own project. maybe we can make it better than the others. onyi and i jumped on board with haste. we planned and plotted and schemed, and a part of me can’t believe it’s real. a part of me can’t believe i’m occupying the same space as these two incredible women as a co-creator of this beautiful project. i can’t believe i’m on their level.

we want you to come together the way we came together. we want to meet even more people out there in cyberland. we want to learn your history. we want to meet you for a virtual cup of coffee, so that if the day comes when we meet you for a physical one, there are no barriers left. we want to engage and connect and share. and we want you to do the same.

for two weeks, write the kind of posts that remind you why you started blogging.

join us at to sign up for the prompts, follow us on twitter at @scintillahq, and get ready for the ride. it’s going to be a good one.

bouquets for besties.

valentine’s day is fast approaching.

and i, personally, want all of my friends to know how much they’re loved.

i absolutely loved my period of singlehood. i was out all of the time, i felt beautiful, i felt confident, and i was fully intent on doing whatever i wanted at all times. i loved being responsible to me, and only me. but it sucked, a little, when this love holiday rolled around and you’d see all of your friends in relationships doing special things.

i’m not one for hating on valentine’s day, and i don’t go gaga over it either. i’m not going to rail on and on about how it’s such a commercial holiday – because most of them are, at this point, and there’s nothing wrong with celebrating all kinds of love – and doing it more often. it’s a day, and if you are so inclined to show your love on this day, more power to you. showing love isn’t always easy. and the world certainly needs more of it.

but back to my point. there is no reason single girls need to feel crappy when all of their attached cohorts are swimming in roses. while chatting with kim the other day, i decided to send one of my single friends flowers on valentine’s day. because my friends are special, and awesome, and i want them to know that, regardless of whether or not they have some romantic thing going on. this isn’t about pity. it’s about making sure that everyone who is loved knows it.

i wanted to make this a thing, and i asked kim how i would do so, and she told me to make a logo, so i have, and then to blog about it, which i am now.  are you up for it? send your single girlfriend flowers on valentine’s day. send them to her office so everyone knows that someone loves her. send them so she has an extra boost, an extra reason to feel beautiful and treasured.

so, here’s what you can do to play along.

  • comment on this entry and tell me!
  • post about what you’re doing, who you’re sending flowers to and why on your own blog (and grab the logo if you wish!)
  • tweet about it under #bouquetsforbesties (yes, that’s kind of a lot of characters, and yes, this is also a very fly by the seat of my pants, random creative project).

who’s with me?

p.s. – there are a ton of deals floating around amazon local, google deals, and the other sites for flower deliveries right now, if budget is a concern.

p.p.s. – kim gets full credit for the name. she is way more creative than me like that.