Everything Miz Meliz

I did it! Got a new tattoo!

Posted on February 19th, 2011 by & filed under Everything Miz Meliz

 

Here is the story on the new tattoo:
I have been wanting another tattoo for years.  I have been wanting a sun/moon since I got my first tat.  My god-daughter, who is an artist, was going to do the design for me.  She once gave me a watercolor of a sun and moon that I love.

When I went to New Mexico a few years ago, I found an ornament in a gift shop that reminded me of the general idea I had in mind for a tattoo.  When I got back from that trip, I made some drawings.  It seemed like I never had the money when I had the desire to have it done.

Recently, I was hanging out with a close friend and I asked him what his plans were for Valentine’s Day.  He said he had some plans coming up, and he told me that he is planning to get a big tattoo of a Celtic cross on his back!  I told him about how I have been wanting to gt another tattoo for at least 5 years.  He encouraged me to just do it.  Later he told me that “you never know about tomorrow, and have no regrets.”

So, when I came across the drawing I had made of the tattoo that I have been wanting, I mentioned it to Lito when he took me out to dinner for Valentine’s Day.  I told him that I really wanted to get it done.  He said he was going to get me a new canvass top for my Jeep and he would also like for me to have the tattoo, but he couldn’t do both.  I decided on the tattoo – I know if I don’t do it now, it could be years before I have the chance again.  And we will have to get the new top for the Jeep anyway by next Fall.

Lito and I went into the tattoo place on Devonshire, next to Les Sisters, and I really liked it there.  We got to talking to one of the artists and he looked at my drawing.  He said he would work on it and he could do it Friday night.   I went there on Thursday to check out the drawing and he finished it while we were talking.  He is really good!  He incorporated exactly what I wanted without me having to tell him, just by talking and getting to know me.  He is a nice guy, very personable, extremely talented, easy to talk to and he really put me at ease.

 

The drawing came out better than I had imagined it!  It’s exactly what I wanted.
When Lito first saw it, he said it looked like he and I.  My brother asked if it was supposed to be Lito and I.  But, it isn’t supposed to be anyone I know – it is the spirit of the elements to me.  The man and woman in everyone.  The two parts of everyone.  The night and day of all of us.  My duality.  My ability to  be the person that each of my loved ones need me to be,  and how it balances out and makes me whole.

So – why get it tattooed on my body?  I just like it.  It’s a fashion accessory.  Like having my ears pierced or my nails manicured.  It’s a practice that is centuries old and it appeals to me.  I hope you like it, too!

Click here to see the slide show of me getting my tattoo:

http://s138.photobucket.com/albums/q250/melitoandboys/?action=view&current=963a6fa7.pbw

“Bot, I love you.”

Posted on February 14th, 2011 by & filed under Check This, Everything Miz Meliz

Valentine’s Day.  I can’t help it .  It makes me happy.  I like to show people that I love them.  Why not?  Yes, we should do it all the time.  But, not all of us do.  And, some of us like to a lot.  So, it’s a day when the romantic people can go all out and the non-romantic people can’t mess up too much.  It doesn’t take much to please someone on Valentine’s Day!  A card, a gesture, an extra pinch – it all means “I love you!”  What can be better than that?

My “Must-Sing-Aloud” Songs

Posted on February 6th, 2011 by & filed under Check This, Everything Miz Meliz

“Sing a Song, Make it Happy to Last Your Whole Life Long, Don’t Worry if it’s Not Good Enough For Anyone Else to Hear, Just Sing! Sing a Song!”

Aretha Franklin’s Star

There are some songs that I always sing out loud when I hear them. Don’t Stop Believin’ by Journey and Respect by Aretha Franklin are the first that come to mind. Boston’s More Than a Feeling is another. The truth is I like to sing out loud to most songs.

I always sing in the car. Now that everyone is talking on their mobile phones or blue tooths, it isn’t awkward to sing out loud while alone in the car. I have always done it and I am not embarrassed if someone sees me. I do feel badly if they hear me because I can’t sing very well.

Another song that I love to sing out loud is Zombie by the Cranberries. I am really good at that one and would even sing it at Karaoke. It is completely out of character and blows people away to think of me singing that one! I know all the words and can sing along to almost anything from the 80’s. I am partial to Madonna and Prince songs. I do like to sing a few Linkin Park and Black Eyed Peas songs, so I am not stuck in the 80’s!

I think singing along to the music is one of the last free things we can do for pure enjoyment. As a child, I loved to sing along, hairbrush in my hand, pretending to be a rock star. Now it’s not a stretch to imagine that as we have Singstar, Rock Band, and Guitar Hero to entertain ourselves. But the feeling it gives us is the same. I feels good to sing loud! Who knows, maybe there is stardom in my future! Don’t Stop Believing! Hold on to that feeling!!

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Fantabulous Friday

Posted on February 4th, 2011 by & filed under Blog Venture, Everything Miz Meliz

It’s a “Fantabulous Friday” according to the kids that make morning announcements at the school where I work.

Urban Dictionary ( http://www.urbandictionary.com/ ) defines fantabulous as  . . .  Sort of like “fabulous” but much more fabulous than the word “fabulous” can convey. Like supercalifragilisticexpialidocius but shorter and easier to spell.  It is an adjective which describes something fantastic and fabulous, generally beyond belief or expectation. Fantabulous is an adjective meaning something is of the highest quality. It is a combination of fantastic and fabulous, which was commonly used in London in the 1960s and 70s to describe various aspects of pop culture and fashions. It was especially popular with Chelsea girls like Joanna Lumley. It is still in use in England today, but not as much as it used to be.  (TMI?)

I would say that I am verging on feeling fantabulous.  I am no longer sick, thank goodness!  I have my energy back.  It is sunny and beautiful here in SoCal.  We managed to stick it out through the cold (freezing for a California girl like me) weather this week.  I refused to put the top up on my Jeep as long as it wasn’t raining.  I expect to be rewarded with mild temperatures this weekend.  I love my life!
It’s Super Bowl weekend.  We were invited to two, possibly three, parties this year.  I haven’t committed myself to anything yet.  I promised Lito that I would make some of his favorite “Super Bowl Food” if we stayed home.  He likes to watch the game on our tv.  No surprise since he isn’t much of a party-goer.  I think he enjoys watching the game with the boys and my brother.  It wouldn’t be fun watching it alone.  For years my Dad would come and watch it with him and the kids.  We miss that!  This year Julian and Colin both have been invited over to their friends houses for the game.  I think it makes Lito sad that the boys have their own “lives” now.  Even Roman wishes he was invited to a party.  I can already see Lito and I as empty-nesters.  It doesn’t look pretty.
After being sick, I can think of many things I should do around the house this weekend.  I know I will be happy if I am at least somewhat productive.  Since I am on the verge of feeling fantabulous I want to have some fun!  Doing housework and completing projects are not exactly my idea of fun.  Maybe I can come up with something that will make it a funtabulous weekend! (Look that up @urbandictionary!)
Now I ask myself, what should I do?  I am almost caught up on all the Oscar nominated movies that I want to see.  I still want to see True Grit (http://www.truegritmovie.com/?gclid=CPK-07u676YCFQYnbAodRUkLEA ) and The Kids Are Alright ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgwjTy_cohg .)  But since I have seen many movies recently, going to the theater doesn’t sound so funtabulous to me.
Here are the nominees for Best Picture:
  • “Black Swan” Mike Medavoy, Brian Oliver and Scott Franklin, Producers
  • “The Fighter” David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman and Mark Wahlberg, Producers
  • “Inception” Emma Thomas and Christopher Nolan, Producers
  • “The Kids Are All Right” Gary Gilbert, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte and Celine Rattray, Producers
  • “The King’s Speech” Iain Canning, Emile Sherman and Gareth Unwin, Producers
  • “127 Hours” Christian Colson, Danny Boyle and John Smithson, Producers
  • “The Social Network” Scott Rudin, Dana Brunetti, Michael De Luca and Ceán Chaffin, Producers
  • “Toy Story 3” Darla K. Anderson, Producer
  • “True Grit” Scott Rudin, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen, Producers
  • “Winter’s Bone” Anne Rosellini and Alix Madigan-Yorkin, Producers

I will need to see 127 Hours (http://www.foxsearchlight.com/127hours/ ,) Winter’s Bone (http://www.wintersbonemovie.com/ ,) The Rabbit Hole ( http://www.rabbitholefilm.com/index.html ,) and The Town ( http://thetownmovie.warnerbros.com/dvd/ ) if I want to be completely informed.  Maybe a DVD movie fest is in order!

It is no coincidence that I began writing about the Super Bowl and ended up writing about the Oscars!  The Academy Awards Show is my Super Bowl. There are 23 days left until the big event.  I love it!  I always know what my plans are on Oscar Night.  I make everyone leave me alone.  I make a nice dinner and stay in.  I like to watch it uninterrupted, live, from the beginning of the pre-show and red carpet interviews, to the last “what were they wearing” and “the winners” talk shows! (Big sigh!  It’s still 23 more days!)

Since I am expecting a sunny and warm weekend ( http://www.weather.com/outlook/recreation/boatandbeach/weekend/91311 ) I want to do something outside, at least go somewhere that requires a drive.  Tomorrow I am taking Roman downtown to a rehearsal at the Music Center.  (http://www.musiccenter.org/?gclid=CNihhYnq76YCFQRvbAodaA2GEg ) He is going to be performing with his school choir in a production of Noye’s Fludde with the LA Opera ( http://www.laopera.com/production/0809/flood/synopsis.aspx ) We are very excited for him!  It is a great opportunity.  Tomorrow he finds out if he will get to operate a puppet.  The choir is performing as the animals on Noah’s Ark.  We are imagining something similar to the animals in The Lion King’s stage performance.  But we really have no idea what it will be like.

While Roman is in rehearsal, I will have some time to hang out in the downtown area.  I used to work there, so I know my way around and I have some favorite hang outs.  There is so much to do there!  I might go to Olvera Street and grab lunch at Phillipe’s.  Or, I might go to the Central Library ( http://www.lapl.org/central/ ) and see the Forty Years of Sesame Street Illustration Exhibit.  I could swing over to MOCA, The Museum of Contemporary Art.  ( http://www.moca.org/index.php )   Every time I went there when I worked downtown it was closed.  It is closed on Tuesday and Wednesday.   My friend Victoria and I would go to lunch at the Arco Food Court and then stroll through the MOCA gift shop.  I would love to go to my favorite restaurant in that area, Ciudad.  But I just found out that it has closed!  I am so sad, that was a terrific restaurant!!  It is now a Border Grill owned and operated by the same people,  ( http://www.ciudad-la.com/ ) so I might check it out.  However, in the same location as the Border Grill ( http://www.bordergrill.com/bg_dtla/bg_dtlawel.htm ) is one of my favorite lunch spots, La Salsa.  If I end up in that part of town, I am certainly having some Mexican food.  It’s ironic that I would go to Phillipe’s ( http://www.philippes.com/ ) if I hang out  at Olvera Street ( http://www.olvera-street.com/html/olvera_street.html ) which is a little village with a traditional Mexican style plaza area full of shops and restaurants.  But I love Phillipe’s Original French Dipped sandwiches!  I am partial to the pork sandwich with blue cheese, double dipped of course!

That sums up my potentially funtaboulous weekend. I may end up doing laundry and watching tv, but the very fact that I have options and the ability to do these things makes me very happy!  Have a fantabulous weekend my friends!

Good Grief! 8 Stages of Grief #MizMeliz

Posted on February 3rd, 2011 by & filed under Everything Miz Meliz

I have lost many people in my life.  They all live in Heaven and in my heart.  In order to cope with my loss, I have found it helpful to identify the stage that I am in.  Sometimes I go through them over and over again.  Or I digress a stage or two before I advance to a peaceful place of acceptance.

There is no perfect order or steps that you can take to reach that place.  One day it just happens.  You might not even realize it, someone else may point it out.  When that happens, I often experience an 8th stage.  It’s one of guilt that I have made it through even though I really didn’t want to.  I feel like I am too young to know all of this.  I feel guilty that I have life and the person I love is not here to experience it.  That’s actually the very thing that ends up pulling me out of the guilty feelings.  Thinking of the person as if they are here and know everything that I am doing.  I can imagine that they are proud of me and that they enjoy seeing me be happy.  I know that they can feel the sorrow and pain that I feel when I miss them, as well as the joys and triumphs!

Grieving is not good.  It is not easy.  However, it can be graceful and peaceful.

It is important to note that sometimes we experience these stages when we go through other losses in life.  We may feel this way if we a fired from a job that we love, when a close friend moves away, or when someone we love breaks up. Going through a divorce is very much like losing a loved one.  Not only the couple mourn the loss of the marriage, it affects everyone they know.

Here is the grief model called “The 7 Stages of Grief”:

1. SHOCK & DENIAL-
You will probably react to learning of the loss with numbed disbelief. You may deny the reality of the loss at some level, in order to avoid the pain. Shock provides emotional protection from being overwhelmed all at once. This may last for weeks.

2. PAIN & GUILT-
As the shock wears off, it is replaced with the suffering of unbelievable pain. Although excruciating and almost unbearable, it is important that you experience the pain fully, and not hide it, avoid it or escape from it with alcohol or drugs.
You may have guilty feelings or remorse over things you did or didn’t do with your loved one. Life feels chaotic and scary during this phase.

3. ANGER & BARGAINING-
Frustration gives way to anger, and you may lash out and lay unwarranted blame for the death on someone else. Please try to control this, as permanent damage to your relationships may result. This is a time for the release of bottled up emotion.
You may rail against fate, questioning “Why me?” You may also try to bargain in vain with the powers that be for a way out of your despair (“I will never drink again if you just bring him back”)

4. “DEPRESSION”, REFLECTION, LONELINESS-
Just when your friends may think you should be getting on with your life, a long period of sad reflection will likely overtake you. This is a normal stage of grief, so do not be “talked out of it” by well-meaning outsiders. Encouragement from others is not helpful to you during this stage of grieving.
During this time, you finally realize the true magnitude of your loss, and it depresses you. You may isolate yourself on purpose, reflect on things you did with your lost one, and focus on memories of the past. You may sense feelings of emptiness or despair.

5. THE UPWARD TURN-
As you start to adjust to life without your dear one, your life becomes a little calmer and more organized. Your physical symptoms lessen, and your “depression” begins to lift slightly.

6. RECONSTRUCTION & WORKING THROUGH-
As you become more functional, your mind starts working again, and you will find yourself seeking realistic solutions to problems posed by life without your loved one. You will start to work on practical and financial problems and reconstructing yourself and your life without him or her.

7. ACCEPTANCE & HOPE-
During this, the last of the seven stages in this grief model, you learn to accept and deal with the reality of your situation. Acceptance does not necessarily mean instant happiness. Given the pain and turmoil you have experienced, you can never return to the carefree, untroubled YOU that existed before this tragedy. But you will find a way forward.

You will start to look forward and actually plan things for the future.

Eventually, you will be able to think about your lost loved one without pain; sadness, yes, but the wrenching pain will be gone. You will once again anticipate some good times to come, and yes, even find joy again in the experience of living.

I memorialized my Mom, Dad, and Sister by getting a tattoo of three hummingbirds because I feel their presence when I see a hummingbird fluttering by . . .

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