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Thursday, July 12, 2012

Four Months Gone By

It's been about four months since I have written in My Urban Body. In the past, I have used this space to be expressive and talk about issues that were important to me at any given time. I have never used this space to get ahead, hold back the truth, or market Blush Photo. My Urban Body has always been a safe place for me to just be.

I have been through so much in the couple of years I have been writing here. We all have. And when I think about the last four months where I fell silent, I feel so totally overwhelmed that my head could explode. There was a failed love, a failed job, a new job, another new job....summer came and I found myself in the midst of the strongest self love I have ever experienced. Real talk, I could fucking explode and sincerely had no idea where to even start here.

Now, I sit typing this from above the clouds on a Delta flight home to New York. I was just in Seattle for six days. I celebrated my 31st birthday and signed to the biggest agency in the world, Getty Images in New York City. Now It' time to get artist management, get on with my career and take control of what I'm doing with my life.

When I first published to this blog, I had expressed myself in the a similar way I feel now- feeling like my whole life is in front of me, but I have always held myself back in one way or another. But, ya know what, I'm not doing that anymore. I've always been my own road block.

I have grown up so much. New York will age a person. And I guess in a way, I have become so different. I think in four months one can truly shed her tight, faded skin. It took me these last four months to really get my feet grounded. I have so much time to focus and prepare for what's next. It's exciting.

I'm grateful for this space I have created in My Urban Body. I appreciate all of you who have read and given me feedback, too.  I am a very lucky girl to have so much love and support from some of the most fabulous people I know.



When I land at JFK airport in New York, I will hit the ground running. I will continue to publish to this blog, as needed. I felt compelled today...and I'm glad I could.




Sunday, February 26, 2012

Red Hook > Chinatown > Greenpoint > Astoria

Brett and Napoleon in Chinatown, NYC
Yesterday was lovely as can be.

I saw Brett and Napolean! We took the pup out for a walk in Chinatown...we got him this balloon, Brett yelled at a man in a mail truck who tried to run us over, and I peeked in windows at potential new glasses. It was good energy, and I love my time spent with Brett. He is great.

After this fun afternoon, I took the train to Greenpoint to see Margaret. I love her so much and I believe I have convinced her to spend a few days with me in Red Hook, soon. We always pick up where we leave off, and I believe we find a special inspiration in each other. Our friendship is unique and beautiful. We ate too much sushi and sipped saki and green tea. It was very cozy. Margaret hugs are the best.

Following these two lovely encounters, I met up with my favorite friends in Astoria, Tomas and Kim. We smoked Hookah 'til 3AM and danced to live music. This place is wild, called Melody, they were dropping fake money from the ceiling onto the dance floor. This was our second visit there...and I learned that Kim got a new job in Philadelphia. While I am very excited for their new adventure, I am very sad that they are moving soon. I have grown very accustomed to our bi-weekly wine, hookah, karaoke parties together. I will have to visit them!

After the all day excitement, I woke up today very hung over and achy. I spent most of the day in bed...such a pity, the sun was shining. I'll let myself off the hook this time...yesterday was fabulous.

Friday, February 24, 2012

A Mild Winter

Aw, it's the end of a mild New York winter. I barely had time to feel a chill. The unexpected and welcome Spring is near.

I made it home to Seattle for a post Holiday visit. It rained- I visited the Market and some other old digs, and saw my nearest and dearest. By the time the week ended, I hit the ground running again in Brooklyn.

Work has me very focused. I also enrolled in a 6-week course in Midtown, starting this Tuesday. I will be polishing my knowledge on Search and Social Media Marketing for Butter by Nadia. My goal with this endeavour is to launch a Butter blog and continue a very focused growth of the online Butter community. The instructor is a woman who does Social Media marketing for VH1. There is a lot to learn from her!

This forward motion towards reaching my new goals has developed a clear inspiration in me!

I am really looking forward to the warmer weather. There is a gorgeous trail that begins in Red Hook and goes along the waterfront all the way to DUMBO- under the Brooklyn Bridge. I have done this ride a few times around the 5 o'clock hour...watching the sky turn from light to dark. The buildings in the city and bridges change personalities in the moments leading up to sundown. I have so much admiration for New York.

Bike ride to the Brooklyn Bridge, Feb 2012




My home in Red Hook is warm. I ended up adopting a kitten, or should I say, he kind of ended up adopting me as his mom. My roommate Vicki has been an amazing person in my life. She is a part of my daily routine and domestic coziness in Red Hook. I feel really lucky, considering our apartment is so modest. It really takes that kind of harmonious relationship for the arrangement to work.

I do get "stuck" in Red Hook from time to time. Working late, cooking at home, hitting the sack early. I get out of the neighborhood as often as possible to visit friends in the city and of course other neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens. Sometimes weeks and months slip by, but we always end up picking up where we've left off...over a glass of wine, coffee or birthday party. I feel that I have made some important new friends since I have been in New York. We have all come here for different reasons and are all so inspired. It's refreshing to have such a diverse base of amazing friends!

Upper East Side Thanksgiving with one of my favorite people on earth

And why we are all here? For me, this reason has become very clear to me. I am here to experience GROWTH. It has become even more clear that I am not here to exclusively expand Blush and rebuild a new client base for freelance photography jobs. I am in New York to leave that behind and discover the grown-up woman I have become. Leaving home truly allowed this new person to flourish...and this electric, static, hustling, swarming city has swallowed me whole. I am here to experience everything I possibly can, and I am learning to appreciate all of my choices that led me here. Even the fucked-up stuff back there...I'm thankful now.

Tonight, I write this blog post in my ruled, moleskin book. I am in a gorgeous room in the East Village that my friend Brett manages, called Sons of Essex. I have finally made it down to check it out. This place is FABULOUS!!! I wouldn't expect anything else but hip hop to be the sound track...reminds me of listening to Kanye driving around Brooklyn in Brett's truck...whew, and there was that time he helped move me out of my Bushwick apartment on the hottest day of the year. Does that make me a bad person??? PROBABLY!! Not to stray too far from the topic of Sons of Essex...I will return there without a doubt. The music and atmosphere was perfect...but the food was EVEN BETTER! Yum, I got to try the Beef Stake Tomato stuffed with Eggplant Parmesan. I want to eat that again.

I've been dating, too. I've noticed that dating in New York is far easier than in Seattle. Why? More men? More men from different cities and countries. I surrendered my OK Cupid profile after one-to-many doosies...and responded with an attempted at Match.com. I guess this means I am actively looking for a partner. I've been single since my separation from my ex-husband, and have come close in various relationships where it could have gone to next level- but just never made it there...for whatever reasons. And honestly, the men on Match.com are so old, and so boring...what's up with that? I think what it is, is that I have finally gotten to a spot in my life where I get to be picky. I suspect I always could have been picky...and it shames me to think about the things I put up with. Most woman my age have the same stories...the doosies, one after another. I'm ready to just be myself, cut the games and embrace kindness when it presents itself. The energy I have put into relationships that never went anywhere is mind blowing. My most recent was one of the most disappointing of them all...but it always helps put things into perspective. I am a catch! Plus, these things don't happen over night, and by knowing what I am looking for allows me to call the shots.

So, this is where I am. I am in a very present state. Indulging in the things that feel right. My friendships, my family, my support system in these things that I have known my whole life...my many apartments I have had and the people who have filled them and brought them to life. I am so grateful for these things...and for what they have given to me. I hope in some light, I have inspired others, because I have been so inspired.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

 Edna St. Vincent Millay at Vassar College in 1914, photographed by Arnold Genthe

A dear friend sent this poem to me...now I'm sharing it with all of you. Enjoy!
xoKristen

Renascence 
Edna St. Vincent Millay

ALL I could see from where I stood
Was three long mountains and a wood;
I turned and looked the other way,
And saw three islands in a bay.
So with my eyes I traced the line
Of the horizon, thin and fine,
Straight around till I was come
Back to where I’d started from;
And all I saw from where I stood
Was three long mountains and a wood.
Over these things I could not see:
These were the things that bounded me;
And I could touch them with my hand,
Almost, I thought, from where I stand.
And all at once things seemed so small
My breath came short, and scarce at all.
But, sure, the sky is big, I said;
Miles and miles above my head;
So here upon my back I’ll lie
And look my fill into the sky.
And so I looked, and, after all,
The sky was not so very tall.
The sky, I said, must somewhere stop,
And—sure enough!—I see the top!
The sky, I thought, is not so grand;
I ’most could touch it with my hand!
And reaching up my hand to try,
I screamed to feel it touch the sky.
I screamed, and—lo!—Infinity
Came down and settled over me;
Forced back my scream into my chest,
Bent back my arm upon my breast,
And, pressing of the Undefined
The definition on my mind,
Held up before my eyes a glass
Through which my shrinking sight did pass
Until it seemed I must behold
Immensity made manifold;
Whispered to me a word whose sound
Deafened the air for worlds around,
And brought unmuffled to my ears
The gossiping of friendly spheres,
The creaking of the tented sky,
The ticking of Eternity.
I saw and heard and knew at last
The How and Why of all things, past,
And present, and forevermore.
The Universe, cleft to the core,
Lay open to my probing sense
That, sick’ning, I would fain pluck thence
But could not,—nay! But needs must suck
At the great wound, and could not pluck
My lips away till I had drawn
All venom out.—Ah, fearful pawn!
For my omniscience paid I toll
In infinite remorse of soul.
All sin was of my sinning, all
Atoning mine, and mine the gall
Of all regret. Mine was the weight
Of every brooded wrong, the hate
That stood behind each envious thrust,
Mine every greed, mine every lust.
And all the while for every grief,
Each suffering, I craved relief
With individual desire,—
Craved all in vain! And felt fierce fire
About a thousand people crawl;
Perished with each,—then mourned for all!
A man was starving in Capri;
He moved his eyes and looked at me;
I felt his gaze, I heard his moan,
And knew his hunger as my own.
I saw at sea a great fog bank
Between two ships that struck and sank;
A thousand screams the heavens smote;
And every scream tore through my throat.
No hurt I did not feel, no death
That was not mine; mine each last breath
That, crying, met an answering cry
From the compassion that was I.
All suffering mine, and mine its rod;
Mine, pity like the pity of God.
Ah, awful weight! Infinity
Pressed down upon the finite Me!
My anguished spirit, like a bird,
Beating against my lips I heard;
Yet lay the weight so close about
There was no room for it without.
And so beneath the weight lay I
And suffered death, but could not die.

Long had I lain thus, craving death,
When quietly the earth beneath
Gave way, and inch by inch, so great
At last had grown the crushing weight,
Into the earth I sank till I
Full six feet under ground did lie,
And sank no more,—there is no weight
Can follow here, however great.
From off my breast I felt it roll,
And as it went my tortured soul
Burst forth and fled in such a gust
That all about me swirled the dust.

Deep in the earth I rested now;
Cool is its hand upon the brow
And soft its breast beneath the head
Of one who is so gladly dead.
And all at once, and over all
The pitying rain began to fall;
I lay and heard each pattering hoof
Upon my lowly, thatchèd roof,
And seemed to love the sound far more
Than ever I had done before.
For rain it hath a friendly sound
To one who’s six feet under ground;
And scarce the friendly voice or face:
A grave is such a quiet place.

The rain, I said, is kind to come
And speak to me in my new home.
I would I were alive again
To kiss the fingers of the rain,
To drink into my eyes the shine
Of every slanting silver line,
To catch the freshened, fragrant breeze
From drenched and dripping apple-trees.
For soon the shower will be done,
And then the broad face of the sun
Will laugh above the rain-soaked earth
Until the world with answering mirth
Shakes joyously, and each round drop
Rolls, twinkling, from its grass-blade top.
How can I bear it; buried here,
While overhead the sky grows clear
And blue again after the storm?
O, multi-colored, multiform,
Beloved beauty over me,
That I shall never, never see
Again! Spring-silver, autumn-gold,
That I shall never more behold!
Sleeping your myriad magics through,
Close-sepulchred away from you!
O God, I cried, give me new birth,
And put me back upon the earth!
Upset each cloud’s gigantic gourd
And let the heavy rain, down-poured
In one big torrent, set me free,
Washing my grave away from me!

I ceased; and through the breathless hush
That answered me, the far-off rush
Of herald wings came whispering
Like music down the vibrant string
Of my ascending prayer, and—crash!
Before the wild wind’s whistling lash
The startled storm-clouds reared on high
And plunged in terror down the sky,
And the big rain in one black wave
Fell from the sky and struck my grave.
I know not how such things can be;
I only know there came to me
A fragrance such as never clings
To aught save happy living things;
A sound as of some joyous elf
Singing sweet songs to please himself,
And, through and over everything,
A sense of glad awakening.
The grass, a-tiptoe at my ear,
Whispering to me I could hear;
I felt the rain’s cool finger-tips
Brushed tenderly across my lips,
Laid gently on my sealèd sight,
And all at once the heavy night
Fell from my eyes and I could see,—
A drenched and dripping apple-tree,
A last long line of silver rain,
A sky grown clear and blue again.
And as I looked a quickening gust
Of wind blew up to me and thrust
Into my face a miracle
Of orchard-breath, and with the smell,—
I know not how such things can be!—
I breathed my soul back into me.
Ah! Up then from the ground sprang I
And hailed the earth with such a cry
As is not heard save from a man
Who has been dead, and lives again.
About the trees my arms I wound;
Like one gone mad I hugged the ground;
I raised my quivering arms on high;
I laughed and laughed into the sky,
Till at my throat a strangling sob
Caught fiercely, and a great heart-throb
Sent instant tears into my eyes;
O God, I cried, no dark disguise
Can e’er hereafter hide from me
Thy radiant identity!
Thou canst not move across the grass
But my quick eyes will see Thee pass,
Nor speak, however silently,
But my hushed voice will answer Thee.
I know the path that tells Thy way
Through the cool eve of every day;
God, I can push the grass apart
And lay my finger on Thy heart!

The world stands out on either side
No wider than the heart is wide;
Above the world is stretched the sky,—
No higher than the soul is high.
The heart can push the sea and land
Farther away on either hand;
The soul can split the sky in two,
And let the face of God shine through.
But East and West will pinch the heart
That can not keep them pushed apart;
And he whose soul is flat—the sky
Will cave in on him by and by.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Peaceful thoughts on Christmas

I am overwhelmed with the beauty of today. The friendly faces of my loved ones dance around in my mind the same way comforting memories warm my heart.

I have spent a lot of time thinking about my mom. The way her smile makes a busy room stand still. She has a flawless way of nurturing me from 3000 miles away and reminds me every day that I always have a home...no matter where I am in the world, or no matter what kind of trouble I've gotten myself into. There is no judgement with my mom. She is understanding, supportive and kind.

Mom is spending Christmas with her partner Albert in Las Vegas, this year. Which is so awesome! She has spent many holiday's traveling to visit family and little time giving herself the opportunity to explore her own life and desires. My mom is a sensual woman...she loves the ocean and music, and has never asked me for anything in my entire life. I have never gotten any real sense of her struggles. She has the strongest character in anyone I've ever met. I am so thankful for her- it could bring me to tears.

And I think about my sister...who has undeniably been my biggest critic and my biggest support system, too. I have sobbed my brains out simply because she was disapproving of my choices. Her opinion has always been important to me, no matter how much I claimed to not care. When I married Kyle, she was the most vocal against it. She saw my talent, my life, my dreams and my beauty being stifled by a bad person. I didn't see it this way, of course, and fought her on it. My choices have always put pressure on our relationship. But she continued to love me. And it wasn't that long ago when I feel like we finally came to a meeting point. Perhaps it was my 20's to 30's change over? Maybe my move to New York? Something grew and changed and has allowed her to be more accepting of me, and me of her, too. Or perhaps sometimes people just need to feel their own struggles to understand the struggles of others?

My sister is the smartest person I know. Whenever I have a question or need advice, she is who I call. She knows everything!!! And is always looking out for me...for what will help me in the short and long term. This support she gives to me is irreplaceable. Shannon in my rock, and I am so grateful for her.

It's not as hard as I thought it would be...all being apart for the holiday's this year. However, I do have a trip home to Seattle already booked for late January. So I suspect that has relieved a lot of the tension...knowing I'll be home soon. I had a couple nights last week that were difficult, I missed the familiarity of Seattle, the power of numbers in friends and of course the much needed time with mom and sis, specifically. I got through it, but cried a lot and slept a lot. I'm glad that passed.

I've been writing in My Urban Body for a couple years...and with another year coming to an end, I can't help but reflect on the recent and distant past. I read Skeletons today, which was my first post here. I remember at the time I was finally coming to a comfortable place in my heart. I had struggled so much with the torment of my ex husband and constant fear of never leaving that behind, that I had to make a conscious choice to live my life the way I see myself, and the way I wanted to live it. I feel this blog has given me the opportunity to explore my actual thoughts, and touch base with what life is all about. The power of free will and self expression, and of course these things are webbed into the choices other people make. This place I come to write has really given me perspective on myself...from the outside looking in at times, and from the inside bursting out into the world around me.

I feel peaceful today. I'm thankful for this time of the year...




Thursday, December 1, 2011

Sunday, November 20, 2011