Go F**k Yourself Friday…the Finance Edition

If you’re like me and have kids in college or teens on their way to higher education, then you probably are facing the same financial squeeze that we’re experiencing right now. Back when we scrimped and saved to pay for our kids’ Bar and Bat Mitzvahs, we weren’t really thinking that we’d have to pay about eight years worth of B’nai Mitzvahs to put both our kids through college. The good news is, our money woes have inspired this week’s column. Without further ado I present Go F**k Yourself Friday, the Finance Edition…

Go F**k Yourself Property Tax Bills…Just as we were getting ready to celebrate the New Year, that unmistakable blue bill wound up in my mailbox on December 31. Go F**k Yourself property tax manager who thought it would brighten my spirits to receive a whopping bill the day before I started 2019. Seriously, you couldn’t wait until January 2? Once I send in a kidney to cover this bill, I cannot wait until the next one arrives in April – just in time for tax season. Oh, and now that we can no longer write off part of our property tax bill due to the changes in our tax laws, I hate you even more. Here’s hoping that in a few years we can sell our house and move somewhere like Maine where they have no taxes and cheap lobster. 

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself FAFSA…If you are a parent of a college bound student, then FAFSA has become the bain of your existence. While I have a masters degree and my husband has an MBA, we always seem to screw up this application year after to year to the point where it always gets rejected at the 11th hour. This time, we’ve filed the wrong IRS form for our daughter from 2016 even though it’s the only form we filed for her. Huh? With tuition rates skyrocketing at colleges across the country, applying for FAFSA is worse than a visit to an oral surgeon – no offense to oral surgeons out there but I can’t imagine root canal being fun.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself People Who Can Afford to Take Over the Top Vacations During the Holidays…Yes, we saw you relaxing by the pool with your perfectly pedicured toes. We caught your family beach shots in Cabo. We even saw you skiing in the Alps, biking in Costa Rica and zip lining in Hawaii. Please understand, we are thrilled you were able to afford to pay top dollar for your vacation getaway and you totally deserve it, but here’s the thing. We scrounge up cash every year to travel to the hottest places on earth during the summer months because it’s cheaper and we can’t afford to travel during the holidays. Maybe I just need to delete my Facebook account this time of year so I don’t get jealous. Or maybe I can fast forward to six years from now when my kids will be off the payroll and we can finally travel to the Caribbean or South America when the temperature outside isn’t 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself Health Insurance Companies….When I became an entrepreneur, I never thought I’d have to pay the salary of an entry level teacher for my health care insurance but fast forward a decade and here we are. Since we no longer have an employer covering our medical expenses, we now pay more than what it costs to send one of our kids to a New York State school for a plan that doesn’t even cover certain prescription meds. The other day, my daughter had to get a prescription for eye drops and her doctor gave her two choices – a $10 version and a more expensive one that wouldn’t burn her eyes. When she found out the pain free eye drops was $150, she opted for the stinging sensation in order to save us a few bucks. Thankfully, my daughter is already learning the value of a dollar but seriously, what kind of madman is setting prices at those drug companies anyway, forcing people to choose between medication that will burn your eyes or a more expensive version that won’t? That’s just seriously wrong and there’s nothing funny about that at all. 

via GIPHY

If you’re like me and feel like you’re in a canoe that’s sprung a leak, I hope you got some laughs before you start paying your bills this month. The good news is, you’re not alone. The bad news is, it still sucks. Here’s to a debt free Friday and a fabulous weekend!

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself Friday…the Nor’easter Edition

If you live on the east coast, then you’re getting ready for a massive snowstorm and temperatures that will make it feel colder than Antarctica this weekend. Nothing like a blast of bad weather to put me in a foul mood. And so dear readers, today I present to you, Go F**k Yourself Friday, the Nor’easter edition.

Go F**k Yourself Canadian Goose Coat companies that always make me question whether that $750 investment in a puffy black coat with a fur lined hood is really that worthwhile. But then we hit frigid temps and I’m left standing outside on a train platform staring at people with that signature goose patch on their arm who I know are feeling balmy in 12 degree weather. Me, on the other hand, has lost the feeling in my texting fingers.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself Obsessive Snow Shovelers. You know who you are. You’re the neighbor whose driveway is completely free of snow the moment the last flake lands on the pavement. Your front walk is cleared away and you can easily drive your car and walk to your front door without slipping on a patch of ice. Sure I’d love to be you too but the problem is, I didn’t invest in that Canadian Goose down coat so I can’t spend more than 15 minutes outside without freezing my buns off. Plus, I hate shoveling snow so there’s that.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself People with Empty Garages. Yes, we’re that family who needs the chick from that decluttering show to spend a weekend in our garage cleaning out all our crap so we can park our cars and not have to use an ice pick to chisel our windows. But you are sitting pretty. You’ve got fancy shelves and everything is hung properly on the walls so you can actually use your two car garage for your cars and not for an old couch with shredded slipcovers that you should have thrown out three years ago. 

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself Invisible Teens who no longer walk up and down our block offering to shovel our driveway for a nominal fee. I guess they’re all toasty warm playing Fortnite for 17 hours and counting. I’m starting to think I need to convince my mom friends to start playing Fortnite too because once my Beverly Goldberg loving crew starts honing in on their beloved game, they’ll give it up for good.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself to the Person who Makes the Call on Unnecessary School Closures. Don’t get me wrong, if there’s a blizzard outside, I definitely don’t want to be driving my kid to school but if we have had a light dusting, that’s not a reason to close the school. Oh and don’t even get me started on those 5am delayed opening wake up calls. Whatever happened to those days when kids would trudge a few miles in the snow just to make it to school? Yeah, I didn’t do that either so never mind.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself to the Snow Plow Driver who Just Ruined my Shoveling Job I have already mentioned that I hate shoveling snow more than I hate losing the circulation in my fingers on a train platform. But after I toss my shovel back into the garage, I hear a whooshing sound in the background and then see out of the corner of my eye that a snow plow has just spread a foot of snow from the street back onto my driveway. Seriously? I’m going to follow you home, rent a snow plow and wreck your driveway too.

via GIPHY

Despite the mountain of snow that we’re expecting I have to admit, I’m kind of looking forward to some hot chocolate with marshmallows and a six hour Netflix binge. Have a great weekend everyone and stay safe and warm!

Go F**k Yourself Friday…The Restaurant Edition

We’re just about to start the weekend, so I figured it would be a good time to devote a Go F**k Yourself column to the things that drive us nuts when we go out to restaurants. As someone who likes dining out a lot, we’ve had a lot of positive experiences and the restaurants that we love are doing everything right. But sometimes, there are things that just get under our skin. See if you can relate…  

Go F**k Yourself to Restaurants that Don’t Serve Unsweetened Iced Tea. A few years ago, I made a commitment to detox from Diet Coke. As a result, my drink of choice became unsweetened iced tea. One would think that’s an easy beverage request but I’m honestly baffled every time I go into a restaurant, ask for my iced tea and they respond that they only have sweet tea or no iced tea at all. Here’s the thing. If you serve tea and you have ice, then guess what? You have unsweetened iced tea!

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself Space Invader. You know who you are. You’ve just walked into an extremely cozy restaurant whose tables are really close together. Rather than give the people who are dining their space, you decide to hover right near their table, bumping my elbow as I reach for a roll and a glass of malbec. Back up b*tch and move over to the bar.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself Loud Talker. I know you probably don’t hear yourself, but I do and I’m about 30 feet away from you trying to have a quiet dinner with my husband. I don’t really care about your high stakes job as a bond trader or about the girl who you totally blew off because you are an a**,  but if you could just stop dropping the F bomb in every sentence, that would make everyone’s restaurant experience a whole lot better. I really don’t mind people who curse but if you’re going to shout profanities throughout my entire meal, I am going to walk over to your table and tell you to go F Yourself. 

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself Waiter with No Timing Whatsoever. So we sat down about 20 minutes ago and you still haven’t stopped by our table. Then after you finally brought our drinks and took our order, you started bringing out our appetizer and entree at the same time. Then, when you could clearly see we were in the middle of a heated discussion, you came over to see how we were doing and whether we needed anything else. No I do not want crushed pepper on my risotto but I do want a sprinkle of parmesan cheese but now I can’t find you and my food is getting cold. Some words of advice  to ensure a seamless restaurant experience – ask for my drink order as soon as I sit down and make sure you bring water and rolls tout suite. Never bring my appetizers and entrees together and if I’m having an argument with anyone, just stay the F**k away from my table until I give you the high sign that the coast is clear.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself to the Restaurant Dinner Loiterers  Everyone is entitled to having a nice leisurely dinner without being hassled but if you know a restaurant is busy and there’s a line out the door of people waiting to be seated, that should be your cue to get the F**k out. Pay the damn bill, put on your coat and go to the bar if you still want to hang out with your friends. When I’m really hangry, I will pay your bill for you just so I can sit down and eat.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself Friday…the Technology Edition

Since my family, friends and perfect strangers are hopelessly addicted to our digital devices, I’ve decided to devote this week’s column to the digital demons that are taking us away from experiencing things IRL (that’s “in real life” for those of you wondering, what does IRL mean anyway?)

Go F**k Yourself Junk Mail Spammers

To all the companies that somehow got a hold of my email address without my permission and proceed to send me emails every day of the week offering advice on how to slim down, save a sea urchin, donate to a political campaign in Idaho or offering me a new credit card with 0 APR financing…get the F**k out of my inbox!!! I did not ask to be put on your list and because of you, I have to delete at least 100 or more junk emails per day. This year, I’m going to just start unsubscribing to all those junk messages or maybe I’ll just be radical and live like a millennial by completely ignoring all my emails in the first place.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself Snapchat

Admittedly, this selfie inspired app is not really meant for me and I still have no idea how it really works. What I do know is that both of my kids spend hours each day snapping weird pictures of themselves so they can keep up with their crazy 365 day streaks with friends. It wouldn’t really bother me except I know they’re snapchatting whenever I ask them a question and all I get is complete silence. So thanks Snapchat for causing my kids to totally ignore me. Maybe I need to start a snapchat streak with my kids so they will start communicating with me on a regular basis. Then again, maybe not.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself to Any Major Site that Doesn’t have a Human Customer Service Rep

This past week, one of my business websites completely disappeared. I haven’t touched the site in months, I paid all my bills on time and yet, when you enter in the URL, it’s completely vanished. When I tried to get to the bottom of the issue, I discovered that WordPress doesn’t have a single human being working on their customer service desk, leading you to be diverted to a third party company that can help fix your problem but I’m convinced they probably hacked it in the first place. Meanwhile, my hosting site, GoDaddy, also connects you via Liveperson and then starts speaking to me like I’m a web developer, leaving me completely frustrated and bewildered. If you can’t employ humans to talk people like me through crisis situations, than please warn me in advance that I’m on my own if something screws up. Otherwise, I’m left with an error message and a big old holy crap I need to start all over again scenario that I’m really not looking forward to dealing with in the New Year.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself to Apps Whose Notifications Wake Me Up at 3am

I know there’s a quick fix to not getting notifications on my phone – just turn on the do not disturb mode before you go to bed, but on those occasions that I forget to do that, I really don’t appreciate being woken up by Houzz that a lamp just went on sale, or finding out on NextDoor that an outdoor cat named Pickles hasn’t returned home yet. Not that I have anything against Pickles but seriously, unless there’s a state of emergency or if one of my kids needs me, I do not want to be woken up like Pavlov’s dog at three in the morning by an incessant ding from an app company whose headquarters are clearly not in my time zone.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself to Websites that Don’t Work on Google Chrome

Truth be told, I’m a Google Chrome addict and typically have about 20 tabs open per day. In fact, today, I have 23 tabs open and while my husband gets apoplectic seeing all those open tabs, I’m totally in control and on top of my to-do list. What bothers me is when I attempt to access a website where I need to input information and can’t even find the login option because it doesn’t work on Google Chrome. That means I have to turn on my antiquated Safari browser to access the site and then login knowing they will ask me my password and I will have no clue what it is because Google Chrome remembers all my passwords and Safari is trapped in the early 2000’s and it doesn’t remember s**t. My hope is that in 2019, everyone knows their site has to work on Google Chrome. Otherwise, it’ll be like those restaurants that don’t use Open Table. If I can’t find you on my OpenTable restaurant app, then you just don’t exist to me.

via GIPHY

I hope you all have the opportunity to do a digital detox before the New Year. I can’t promise that I will but I do know, I’m going to try not to let tech get to me in 2019. Oh, who am I kidding? It will get to me and I will deal with it because honestly, I can’t live without it.

Go F**k Yourself Friday…the Holiday Edition

It’s supposed to be the happiest time of the year, but in the past week, I’ve seen stories about how people have the most heart attacks during the holidays while others are totally dreading having to spend time with relatives who don’t share their political views.  For those of you who are completely stressed out this time of year, this one’s for you…

The Holiday Music Militia: Go F**k Yourself to all the people insisting that “Baby It’s Cold Outside” be banned from the radio. I really don’t mind that song at all and am not offended by it, but after day 35 of non-stop holiday music, I’d like to ban radio stations from playing holiday music 24/7 just to torture everyone this time of year. By Christmas Eve, I’d like to get plenty more songs out of my head right now, starting with “Santa Baby.”

via GIPHY

The Holiday Letter Writer: I know it’s taken you at least three weeks to craft your “year in review” letter that you’ve decided to share with people who haven’t actually seen you this past year, but a serious Go F**k Yourself goes out to the people who recap the wonderful year they had by sharing all the amazing things that happened to them in 2018. Maybe I wouldn’t feel so annoyed about your letter if I had actually experienced one of those incredible moments with you. News flash: Time to prune your mailing list so you don’t send your stupid letter to people who you haven’t actually spent any time with in years.

via GIPHY

My Fat Cells: Yes, I know that fat cells are not a person but since they have been my nemesis my entire life, I’m going to give a big old Go F**k Yourself to my fat cells that I know will be expanding this holiday season and will probably set me back again as I start the new year. I’ve been working hard to shrink all of you but I’m also a sucker for baklava, butter cookies and anything else that’s sweet and a billion Weight Watcher points. I know I’m going to hate the fact that I can’t fit into my skinny jeans come January 2nd so I’m just cursing you out in advance.

via GIPHY

Restaurants that are closed on Christmas Day: I totally get that you need to close down or else we’d be serving ourselves this time of year, but still, Go F**k Yourself to restaurants that leave people like me with little options other than Chinese food and movie theater popcorn.

via GIPHY

People Who Wait to the Last Minute to Buy Gifts: Truth be told – I deserve a big old Go F**k Yourself for this one too since I always wait until Christmas Eve to buy gifts. I know I totally could have bought stuff in October or when I bought a new coat last week that was on sale at Lord & Taylor, but no. I’d rather trek out in the pouring rain, circle the parking lot five times to find a spot and then walk a half mile without an umbrella to Barnes & Noble just so I can buy a book I totally could have ordered on Amazon if I actually thought about it a few days ago.

via GIPHY

In all seriousness, I hope all of you have an absolutely wonderful Christmas and New Year. Enjoy the craziness, the gifts, the food, your family and friends and most of all, enjoy the fact that there will be plenty more Go F**k Yourself columns in 2019 to keep you entertained.

Go F**k Yourself Friday…the Ghost Edition

Today’s post goes out to all the people who disappear into thin air thanks to social media. In 2018, we call this practice “ghosting.” I’m happy to say, that this post is a collaborative effort since so many of us have experienced ghosting firsthand and are annoyed by its most prodigious practitioners. If you are among then, go f**k yourself … but first hit reply. Your soul could use the exercise.

via GIPHY

The I Refuse to Text You Back Ghoster: Go F**k Yourself to the brainiac who doesn’t realize WE CAN SEE you’ve read our message. Duh. Either you don’t want to reply or it’s gotten lost in the sea of insipid, unanswered texts and emails swimming in your inbox. Life is hard, we know. Hitting send hurts.

via GIPHY

The Didn’t I Used to Work with You Ghoster: Go F**k Yourself to former co-workers with whom you once worked close but now won’t recognize your name if it was blasted in an Amber Alert. Hello? Bueller? We only sat next to each other for 10 years. Just pretend you know, m’kay? And then respond. Amnesia’s moment is over. 

via GIPHY

The Job Ghoster: Go F**k Yourself to the HR dimwit who sets up interviews with a promising candidates and excitedly suggests a follow up interview. Then disappears faster than a sexual harassment complaint. Hate to break the news, but this is YOUR JOB. Recruiting, meeting and hiring employees is what you get paid for, and if the job isn’t a right fit, SAY SO! People talk, and nothing leaves a worse taste in your mouth than the vanishing human resources rep. Put the “human” in your title and just act … human?

via GIPHY

via GIPHY

The Sorry But Do I Know You Ghoster: Go F**k Yourself to old friends who joined you in climbing up the ladder, and continued climbing long after you left and now can no longer see anyone below. “Hello … hello … hello (echo sound) Remember me? I was holding your hand when you gave birth in the elevator. Still no? Hmm, maybe I have the wrong email. Or am going into the spam filter. Perhaps there’s an assistant pruning the in-box? Or maybe the former “friend” is just a phony who is too important to call back. What goes up must always come down (except Cher, she can survive anything).

via GIPHY

The Ghost Thief: Go F**k Yourself to the brand or business that reaches out to you for help with their business, fawns over your creativity, then steals your ideas without so much as a phone call or email  No problem, have at it! They’re all yours! It’s not like anyone needs to make a living or anything.

via GIPHY

The Half Ghost: Go F**k Yourself to the “friend” who you reach out to for a small favor or question, only to get a useless, one sentence reply that is as helpful as a drunk guy giving you directions to JFK. Thanks!

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself Friday, the Trip Down Memory Lane Edition

I’ve been on this planet for a pretty long time now and as a result, there have been a lot of things that have happened in my life that have pissed me off. I have shared a few of them in some of my FU Friday posts but today, I have decided to take a trip down memory lane so I can share some fresh Go F**k Yourself Friday love with some pretty crappy people from the past.

Go F**k Yourself to Tony Robbins. Yes, that Tony Robbins. While I was excited to be motivated by you to be my very best self and even fist pumped Gayle King at your event, I will never forget the time that I spent more than 12 hours in a freezing cold room with thousands of other people as I felt myself getting sicker and sicker by the hour. By 1 am, after I couldn’t think straight anymore, we were led outside and I lost complete control of my senses when I was instructed to walk across hot coals. Now bear in mind. I am the person who hates riding scary roller coasters, yet something in my brain snapped and I race/walked across burning hot coals and wound up with blisters on my feet and a lung infection – not from the hot coals, but the sub zero temperatures I endured inside that day. Plus, my husband got totally pissed off at me because I didn’t call him for 12 hours and he was about to send out a search party for me. Thankfully, I resurfaced, came to my senses and never attended another Tony Robbins event again. Instead, I am hopelessly devoted to Mel Robbins because she’d never make me walk on hot coals. Maybe she’d share a hot coffee with me, but coals, never.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself Aladdin Capital for firing my husband almost 10 years ago. Since the company is now out of business anyway, I felt like it was a good time to give them a piece of my mind. There was one point in my husband’s life where he thought he was going to spend the rest of his career at that company. They had just given him an incredible bonus and he even convinced me to take a chance, leave my stable job and start my own my company. But then, they pulled the rug out from under him and his friends after the market took a downturn (hello 2008), and we were like a couple out of the Roaring 20’s.  Bye bye Lexus, hello Hyundai. We’ve survived despite our brush being on easy street but a serious Go F**k Yourself goes out to his bosses at the time who seriously turned our American Dream into an episode of Sanford & Son.

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself to the former client who kicked me out of a limo when she was having a bad day.  I had just started working with her and my team had lined up a bunch of interviews to promote the new season of her show. Unfortunately, as the day wore on, a few interviews we had scheduled fell through and by the time we got to the end of the day, she got really pissed that things weren’t going her way and proceeded to yell at me and threw me out of the town car we were riding in. I then walked to the train station in tears and vowed never to work with horrible women like her again. While I was convinced to come back for the rest of the season, after witnessing her torture more of my colleagues, I finally decided to reclaim my dignity and walk away. I have also vowed to never work with toxic people again and damn, that does feel good. 

via GIPHY

Go F**k  Yourself to my old boss who, while going through a midlife crisis, bought a convertible sports car and waved me on one day while he was pulling out of the parking garage next to our office building with one of his friends. I was nine months pregnant and trudged along as I walked to the subway station that was several blocks away. I later found out that he had told someone that he didn’t want to hire anyone else who was planning to go on maternity leave because it was more trouble than it was worth. He has since retired and embroiled in a scandal that he’s going to have to probably deal with for a very long time so karma, thank you very, very much for all that you do. 

via GIPHY

Go F**k Yourself to the Person who mistakenly sent me a really mean message about me that was meant for someone else. I will never forget the searing words she used about my sub par writing abilities and that she also labeled me a “serial bridge burner.” If you happen to know who you are and are reading this, consider this one of those bridges burned.

via GIPHY

Thanks for the memories everyone! Now make it a good day and if not, well you already know the alternative.

No Matter How Old Your Kids Get, the Worry Gene Never Fades Away

I was up again last night at 1:53 am checking to see if my daughter had sent me a text message. She was pretty stressed out and I was hoping to find out if she was able to head back to her apartment rather than spend the night at art school. She was struggling with one of her projects – she’s in a glass blowing class and every time she kept trying to finish, it broke – over and over again. Each time that happened, she called me after she had already shed tears with one of her classmates. I felt so bad and before I went to bed, said a silent prayer to the glass blowing gods that this time, the project wouldn’t spontaneously shatter and she could finally go home and rest.

At 2:00 am she texted back that she had indeed finished the project and had also finished a project for her Fibers and Materials class where she was embroidering my denim jacket, a sock and a shirt with a symbol that was empowering to her. I hope when I eventually get my jacket back, it’ll be empowering to me too.

I’m sure if you have a child away at college, they may not be fretting about glass blowing but instead, it could be molecular biology, or statistics, or their pre-law classes. No matter how old our kids get, we just can’t stop worrying.

But it doesn’t stop with finals week. On the weekends, when she’s out with her friends at parties, I check my phone in the wee hours of the morning to make sure she’s taken an Uber back to her apartment and she’s sound asleep in her bed. I send her silly bitmoji messages during the week telling her good night and I love her just so she knows I’m always thinking about her.

When it comes time for her to come home, I worry when she’s under our roof – especially if it’s 3am and she still hasn’t returned home and it’s raining or snowing outside.

Recently, my daughter informed me that she’d like to study abroad the first semester of her junior year. The location she’ll be studying in is Rome and I know it’ll be pretty amazing when we get to visit her, but then I’ll be worrying about her from thousands of miles away.

Sometimes I honestly wonder if it was easier being sleep deprived with a newborn than sleep deprived with a child approaching adulthood. 

I know I should just trust everything will be fine and not worry so much but it’s hard to turn that switch off in my brain. I even have the location services device activated on my phone so I can check and see if she’s safe in bed if I haven’t heard from her late at night. I’m sure you probably think I’m nuts, but my kids mean everything to me and I just want to make sure they are getting enough sleep, know they are supported and also be there if they call or text no matter what time it is – especially if she just wants to let me know she’s okay.

If you’re a mom of an infant or toddler or preteen I’m here to let you in on a little secret. While your relationship with your child will change in amazing ways over time, the part that never gets easier is the one where you worry about their lives, their future and their mental well being no matter how old they get. Try as we might, as parents, we worry. I guess that’s our jobs. Here’s hoping that one day, I’ll be able to worry just a little bit less.

My Girl Crush: Michelle Obama

I’m not gonna lie. I have a crush on Michelle Obama. So much so, that out of ever female speaker on this planet, the only person who I have seen twice is Michelle. The first time was when I was invited to the White House for a private event for mom bloggers where she appeared as a featured speaker and the second was with my daughter while she was on tour for her new book Becoming.

I just want you to know – if you are deciding whether to buy the book, my advice is to buy it so you have it as a memento but then download it on Audible.com and listen to Michelle narrate her life while you’re walking the dog, driving to pick your kids up from school, riding to work, shopping at the supermarket or riding the subway. It’s 40+ hours of pure inspiration, laughter and a twinge of sadness too. 

What I loved most about the book was that it was relatable on so many levels – whether you grew up in a neighborhood much like Michelle’s on Euclid Avenue on the South Side of Chicago where her family experienced racism first hand as neighbors began moving away as a result of “white flight”; to the high school guidance counselor who told her she wasn’t “Princeton material” and she was determined to prove her wrong – earning degrees from Princeton and Harvard Law School. Then there’s her courtship with Barack, who she mentored when he was a summer associate at the law firm where she worked; and her early years raising her two girls while she balanced her career as her husband pursued politics in Chicago and on the national stage.

Michelle Obama truly epitomizes every working mom I know. We grew up with a fire in our bellies determined to succeed but when we became moms, we realized we had to figure out a different path to pursue our passions while being there for our kids when they needed us most. I also loved the fact that she truly found her passion after meeting Barack – he was her “swerve” which led her to let go of the frenetic pace of climbing an unfulfilling corporate ladder so she could do something much more impactful with her life. 

Michelle Obama is not only inspiring to my generation, but to my daughter and her friends as well. There was a sea of mother/daughters at the Wells Fargo Center last week and we were all giddy with excitement. In fact, many of us met on the SEPTA train headed to the event and I joked that this was our version of the World Series. When we were standing in line to get into the concert venue, there was a camera crew out front and a woman couldn’t contain her excitement sharing why she was so thrilled to have the chance to hear Michelle Obama speak. It was like an Oprah Winfrey moment…You get car! You get a car! And You Get a Car! The energy surrounding all of us was positively electric.

via GIPHY

At the heart of it, we were all aching to be inspired again. Many of us are just tired and shell shocked by the last two years and we are so ready to believe that things will turn around for the better. For my daughter, I was thrilled for her to hear sage words of advice from the former First Lady about the importance of ignoring the naysayers because once you do achieve your dreams or gain acceptance to places that are oftentimes occupied by people with mediocre intelligence at best, you will come to find that you might just be the smartest person in the room and that will feel damn good.

I feel lucky to have been able to share this unforgettable experience with my daughter and cannot wait to see what she achieves in her lifetime. As for me, as I write my next chapter, I’m taking everything Michelle said to heart about what I am becoming. I’m trying my best not to have regrets about the decisions I have made over the years, only planning for the future as I focus on things I love to do while exposing my own kids to opportunities and experiences that will help guide them towards whatever it is they’re supposed to become. 

So thanks Michelle. I will forever have a girl crush on you. I do hope to see you again someday. Something tells me if I keep dreaming, doing and becoming, I absolutely will. 

How to Snap Out of it When You’re in a Funk

I don’t know what it is about this time of year. Maybe it’s the fact that I have to keep my space heater on at all times in my sunroom because the frigid air is managing to seep through the window frames. Or I’m sitting in front of a computer sending out emails to countless contacts in my industry and no one seems to be responding. Or the to do list I set out for myself today seems to never get done.

Whatever it is, I am officially in a funk and haven’t really been able to snap out of it for several months. Now let me be clear. I have a really good life – a loving husband, great kids and parents too but that’s what you see on the surface. I’m also in the midst of a sandwich generation situation where I’m dealing with the fact that my parents are getting older and not doing that well health wise while my kids are headed towards their late teens and almost 20 and dealing with tougher issues that I never thought I’d ever have to deal with in my life.

In a word, I’m tired. Okay, that’s two words but you get the gist. I have also been trying to reinvent my career which feels as if it has stalled but in reality, it hasn’t. I just don’t know what I want to do next and am being uber cautious about every single step I take. 

So how do you get out of a funk you ask?  Here’s my advice:

  1. Do not spend the entire day working in front of a computer. That’ll get anyone depressed.

2. Write a list of what you want to accomplish that day and always include something that feeds your soul – whether it’s exercise, singing, dancing or writing. Whatever it is, just do it.

3. Get off social media. The minute you get sucked into the vortex of Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, you can kiss at least 1-2 hours of your life away. Plus, each time you scroll through your feed and see people doing things you used to be able to do in your career, don’t start getting wistful or angry that you’re not included anymore. Suck it up buttercup and focus on you!

4. Walk the dog. If you don’t have a dog, then get outside and just take a walk. The more you change your surroundings, the better you will feel.

5. Turn off breaking news notifications on your phone. Every time I see my phone light up, I get a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach. So turn off those notifications and if you want to check in from time to time, then great but otherwise, what you don’t know at that second is not going to kill you.

6. Call a friend. Yes. I really said pick up your phone and don’t text someone. Go old school and call them to say hello.

7. Plan a vacation. While you may not have any money to go away, it’s never too early to start checking to see how many points you have and use them wisely. Maybe you can plan a getaway on points and that will definitely make you happy.

8. Volunteer. I know you’re busy but there are so many people who are less fortunate than you. Stop feeling sorry for yourself, get out there and help others because honestly, that totally feeds the soul.

9. Bake. I used to hate cooking and now whenever I’m feeling down, I head to the kitchen and start cooking. In fact, I think I may just whip up a banana bread tonight while I’m feeling blue.

10. Binge watch your favorite TV show. Whether you want to slip under the covers and escape back to your 20s with “Friends” or you just want to catch up on last week’s episode of “This is Us,” there really is nothing better than ditching your to do list for a little mindless TV streaming. 

Wouldn’t you know it, I think I’m feeling better already. Now it’s time to get back to work. Then again, maybe not.