Happy Mother's Day!  When I think of Mother's Day I think of many things.  Most of all, I think of this day belonging to all women, whether you are the Mom of a human, a fur baby, plants, the earth, your friends, siblings, or yourself, and we all need to mother ourselves, probably much more than we actually do.  I think about how lucky I am to have a wonderful daughter and to have had a wonderful Mother myself and how broken my heart has been since I lost her in 2019.  This picture was taken in 2015 in Santa Barbara right before she got sick.  Me, my Mom, my daughter and my sister.

Today I also think about those years when I wanted to be a Mom more than anything.  I got pregnant in my mid 20's and had a miscarriage.  It was a devastating experience and one that I thought would only be made palpable by getting pregnant again and having the baby I was meant to have.  Little did I know then that it would take 7 years for that to happen.  That's an eternity when you want desperately to have a baby.  

Many doctors, fertilely drugs, and no diagnosis later, I was the only one that held to the dream that not only would I have a baby, I'd have a girl and I'd name her Dana, after my Grandmother.  Even her father had given up on the idea.  A lot went on over those 7 years including our move from New York to California.  I met a woman at work, she had just had a baby, she said "go to my Dr., he's a miracle worker."  I went, he was.  He wanted to inseminate me with my husbands sperm, (ex husband not current husband), this was to make sure it went directly into my cervex, and of course I had to be ovulating at the time.  I had forgotten to ask for a sterile container at my last appointment so I boiled one of those big old orange tupaware containers (remember those?)  The nurses had a good laugh when they saw it, they said it was the office joke for quite some time.  After the procedure they even asked me if I wanted it back, um no!  I will never forget the feeling when I walked out, I remember it so clearly.  As I exited the building and walked through the door to the parking lot, I said to myself, "wow, I think I just got pregnant."  And I did. 

The second good joke was that baby Daddy didn't even attend the event.  And the third joke was that for a few months after she was born we called her Tuppy.  I haven't told this story in ages and I'm sharing it with you now as a reminder that women's intuition is real.  Honor it, hone it, we know what we know.  Always go with your gut, sometimes there is no rhyme or reason to the timing or the detour and in the moments when there appears to be no hope, hang on tight because those are the times you need to believe the most.  

When you're a Mom, of a full on grown up, (because somehow she keeps getting older and I don't), you realize that there are basically two ways it can go.  Your kid(s) either want to hang out with you or they don't.  I consider myself one of the lucky ones because my daughter and I are besties.  And as besties we make sure we have a lot of girl time together.  I cherish this time because I know that at any given moment life can swoop in and whisk her off to parts unknown, and that's a good thing, but for now, I'll enjoy every minute with a grateful heart.

If you've followed my blog for a while and read my girl trip posts you know that when my daughter was twelve I started taking her on Mother Daughter trips for her birthday, promoting the idea of making memories instead of getting stuff.  That first trip was pretty special because I also took my Mom.  Three generations, off to Hawaii.  I was getting divorced after a 17 year marriage and my Mom was still grieving the passing of my Dad a few years earlier.  And while most of my daughter's friends were excitedly planning elaborate Bat Mitzvahs all my daughter wanted to do for her 13th birthday was swim with dolphins in Hawaii, and so she did. 

That started a pretty solid tradition.  Not all trips were as fancy as Hawaii, but NY, San Fransisco and the ultimate girls trip to Paris, which she surprised me with, have all made for some pretty life enhancing memories. 

Back to present day and the life and times of birthdays in a Covid world.  My daughters birthday is in March so she's officially been three different ages during Covid!   This year it was another staycation but with things opening up in LA we ventured out.  There are so many things to do in Los Angeles from the mountains to the sea I could probably plan a months worth of staycations and never repeat a thing.  

On this particular March day we started out bright and early, 7 AM to be exact, because we had to get to the best bagel place in LA, Pops in Culver City.  Recently, The New York Times ran an article about Pops beating out NY for the best bagels.  This lead every ex New Yorker, including me, right to their front door.  My daughter had been before but this was my first time and I have to say the bagel, (with everything, of course), was amazing, and we had gluten free and still, amazing!  Birthday bagels was a perfect way to start the day.

I suppose I should mention that no matter where we are everything we do usually revolves around food.  When are we eating?  Where are we eating?  What are we eating?  And of course, where are we eating next?  So from Culver City we headed to West Hollywood.  We strolled around the residential streets that we love, and then into the Blue Whale AKA The Pacific Design Center, we call it live Architectural Digest.  My visits to the Blue Whale started years ago with my own Mom when she would come visit me and later when she came to live with us.

My Mom, who started a side hustle before side hustles were a thing, started her own little interior design business when she was in her 50s.  Although she had gone to FIT (me too) and was extremely creative, later in life she ended up working in a school for disabled children and one day she told me that she was mad at herself for not following her dream of being an interior designer.   Of course me being me said - then be one.  Of course her being her said - yeah right.  I knew she was good at it and always did it for her friends homes and ours.  So the next day I got her all the information to attend Parsons School of Design on a part time bases and the rest is design history.  Her little company 'Penny Interiors', (her name was Penny), made her very happy.  Sadly Covid hit the Design Center hard and it wasn't the exciting thriving vibe that I remembered, lots of showrooms had brown paper on the windows and you could hear a pin drop.  But we were able to visit a few kitchen of your dreams show rooms.  And the views are pretty amazing.

My daughter is really funny.  And for some reason parking meters in LA are either too high for the average height woman or too low, I think to support people in wheelchairs.  So for us it's tip toes or crouch.

Then we were off to one of our favorite lunch spots.  For years I worked on the Westside and I have to say, although I don't miss the commute, I miss all my fabulous favorite lunch spots, especially Mauro Cafe at Fred Segals in West Hollywood.  The Fred's pasta is amazing (even the gluten free option!)  With tables properly spaced outside and everyone still masked up, except when eating, the vibe was pure happiness and we reconnected with our favorite hostess and waitress and all talked about how happy we were to be vaccinated.

Sufficiently stuffed, we were back in the car and off to Pasadena.  If you know LA at all you'll know that from the West Valley to Culver City to West Hollywood to Pasadena covers a lot of city!  We didn't include the beach or mountains today because we do that all the time.  Today we were headed to the Huntington Library and Boticnal Gardens.  This was really the vacation portion of the day between the Italian gardens, the Rain Forest and the Desert Southwest, we strolled about 5 miles worth of soul soothing gardens.  The museum is still closed as is the tea garden (poop) but we'll return once they open back up.  My daughter loved it so much she got herself an annual pass!

See that bird on the fountain to the left, kind of bleeding in with the colors.  Well, I stood there talking to it, trying to coax it over to me to get a better picture of it, until my daughter came out of the rest room and pointed out the sign, " STAY AWAY FROM THE BIRDS THEY ARE VICIOUS".  So me.

We hit the road again, stopping for a box of her favorite sushi from Sugar Fish and then a vegan ice cream cup cake party.  And what every grown up girl needs, a goofy picture to remind her that she will always be a silly kid a heart.

Wishing you a very Happy Mother's Day! 💖