Who Will You Be #WhoWillYoobi

As I am just trying to resettle myself after a trip to Japan, I wanted to post something else that just came out and was also dear to me. About a month ago, I was approached by a friend to put Evie into a short commercial for the company Yoobi.  If you aren’t familiar, they make bright and fun school supplies, and sold at Target.  Their position is a one for one model; by purchasing their products, they give supplies to schools in need all around America. Growing up, I remember having one set of markers that are to last me the whole year or even trying to use the last bit of crayon with just my fingertips to be able to create what I wanted.  As a mother, I have been fortunate to be able to provide my daughter with things she needs to create, and see that her […]

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The Small Family Business Hustle

There’s moments where I wake up to the reality, “Wait, when did we become a family of traveling salesmen?”  I don’t know that we planned for it or knew what was involved when we signed on, but it’s become clear this year and last year was a significant change in our lifestyle because of our side business. If you are just tuning in, my husband Peabe has found a creative outlet in a side business of making pins and patches.  You can purchase from the website www.pea-be.com   SneakerCon May 2016   It has since grown to have a loyal following and super cool fans.  We ship and stock from our living room where we drink wine and watch Netflix as we fill orders.  I have to say that it’s been an amazing experience to share with him and my daughter and so fulfilling to see something grow from just […]

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Getting Back to What’s REAL in Chicago

Wow, I can’t believe I’ve gone so long without posting anything.  It seems this year has sucked out all the energy I’ve had for creative endeavors, and in my silence I know it’s been bothering me. Life gets busy, I get that.  Sometimes even a little “heavy”… I get that too.  This year has been nothing but one thing after the next, but I can’t keep making excuses for why I can’t focus on my own stuff from time to time.  Those who know me well enough know I can close off in times of distress, and I am so aware that thats not how I want to live my life.   Having drinks at The Lunatic, The Lover, & The Poet in Fulton Market with my sister and brother in law… he’s channeling some of that Lunatic vibe. Checking out The Publican restaurant for dinner and one of my faves […]

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My Mother’s Day Video

My mother’s day compilation… because I love this girl and I’ve been pretty blessed to have so many amazing experiences with her.  She is my world, and I’m so happy to be her “Nanay”. Happy mother’s day to all those mamas out there.

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Thoughts for My Niece That Left Us Too Soon

The last two weeks have been spent trying to come up with the right words to explain such a loss.  I have been back and forth in my grief and unable to find solace in the fact that she is no longer with us.  Along with many other friends and family, we took an uncomfortable backseat to the pain that my sister and brother-in-law have endured and will continue to endure. At times like these, one can refer back to the unfairness of it all, that such loving and open-hearted people can have something so unfortunate happen to them.  I can get eaten up in the anger of knowing that they are the last people you would ever want to be hurt by such a loss.  It breaks my heart to see the pain of my closest sister, my most trusted of family, the matron of honor at my wedding, […]

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Throwing Caution to the Wind When Traveling to Cuba

I like to think I take trip planning very seriously.  I have my pre-trip blog reading, my Pinterest boards, my Google Maps, and more.  I know from traveling with my girl, Rachelle, to Thailand and going with my family to Scandinavia, that my planning can get a little OCD at times.  When I was planning my trip to Cuba, it all seemed to always be falling apart. The initial plan was to go with my mom and daughter in either February or May.  That fell through, but my cousin Kathy had some free vacation days at the end of January, so we decided to go.  Timing wasn’t the best as I was just coming back from a pretty difficult trip to Chicago, I had friends moving away that I’d like to spend time with, and I had a daughter in school that I would have to have coverage for the […]

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A Look Back at the Women’s March in Oakland

After the election results in November, I remember reading the invite to this Woman’s March and thinking to myself that this NEEDED to happen, and asking myself why isn’t this happening sooner.  I think my immediate need for action was basically me not understanding the scale of what this event was going to be.  As the date grew closer and the anticipation of the inauguration was building as well.  I am past the point of “how did this happen?” or even mourning the times as it were.  I am past feeling the sadness over the whole situation and I have just letting the anger consume me.  I am okay with that, the anger needs to stay and keep me motivated. What made me so proud that day of the march was to see that I wan’t alone, that there was a fury that we all must feel and be activated […]

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The #ChicagoPeacePin Project

Together with my husband (Bryan “Peabe” Odiamar) and our friend (Jon Stuyvesant), we had shared some anger recently when we read an article in the Tribune about how 25 people were shot in a 14 hour period in Chicago.  We were all born and raised there, in Chicago, and still violent even many years back.  We were outraged.  As the number kept growing this year, we considered the social climate of the city as we continued in our own daily lives outside the city.  We wanted to do something, be active somehow, but also felt so removed from the issues being out of state.   Jon Stuyvesant currently lives in Brooklyn, New York.  He has worked in television for a variety of major networks including: NBC, ABC, OWN, TLC, A&E & MTV.   As a documentary filmmaker Jon has worked on many award winning films and most recently completed Raising Bertie, a […]

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Living on When a Little Bit of the Magic is Gone

It has been difficult days for me, and I wanted to get back to my blog before too much time passes.  I have had some things written and saved, unable to publish because of news that keeps effecting me so deeply that I feel I’ve been more hidden.  Sometimes writing is difficult because of my immediate reaction to close off, so I go back to the safety of draft mode. My friend is missing.  Friday night he was at the Ghost Ship party in Oakland, playing music and giving hugs, two things this man is so great at doing.  There was a fire, him and other partygoers were trapped in the smoke and flames.  The warehouse party space was an artist live-work community, a creative hub with creative people.  A lot was lost that one tragic night. “I have wanted to kill myself a hundred times, but somehow I am […]

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Taking the Roads Less Traveled in Northern Norway

Prior to taking our Scandinavian vacation, I knew that I wanted to spend some time really getting to know the culture of the places. Of course all the major cities have lots to offer, but escaping into the less traveled areas is a for sure way to get one-on-one and experience a real dose of what the customs and people are really like in a country. On top of that, one of the major things on my list of things that I wanted to do in Scandinavia was go see the Northern Lights. I have seen it once before in Alaska, but I wanted to show my husband, Peabe, and my daughter, Evie, how amazing it looked in person. I once read an article about how climate change may effect the lights and wanted to be sure that they also had that experience in their lifetime. Lastly, I love getting […]

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