Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Somewhere over the rainbow theres a lazy little horse who's relied on trails for too long

A few weeks ago as I struggled for air and light and food I was intent on leaving New York. I still am, though my departure date has yet to be determined. I'm leaving that up to life for the time being. It's pretty funny. Life, that is. In 2 weeks time I went from having no money, my electricity and heat turned off for a week, scrambling for jobs to no avail using internet at coffee houses, showering once in 5 days only because my friend was kind enough to take me to the gym...to standing on top of a volcano watching lava glow and sputter and spew with glory 4,885 miles away from my godforsaken apartment. A friend needed help and offered me a break from my broke in Brooklyn life and flew me to Hawaii. The kindness of people...it never fails.

I had never been to Hawaii and have pretty much been stuck in NY since I moved, (aside from working in Miami last summer for Swim week) so the trip, and chance to get away and breathe fresh air was welcomed like no other. We went to the beach, the volcano national park, horseback riding - all the typical (I suppose) Hawaiian things one does while there. And, when we visited the Volcano, she just so happened to be in the middle of erupting. In fact, part of the park was closed due to the winds blowing sulfur plumes onto the road. If you're a nature person like me, you must, must, MUST visit a volcano before you die. There is nothing more magical than watching the earth glow while it literally creates itself. Such an amazing energetic rush and a sight that no video I've ever seen has done justice when compared to seeing it in person.

Horseback riding, was my first time. Yes I was extremely sore the next day. Please laugh at me, I laughed at myself. We went riding at a ranch that uses working horses for rides rather than horses that are specifically for riding as most of their business actually comes from the ranch rather than people wanting to go riding. Because of this, our leader asked us to please take whatever way we wished to go, the only thing he asked was to keep the horses off the trails. Because they have new riders from time to time, he said they'll get lazy and test people. If you don't show them you're boss and actually use your reins, and kick them (this part was hard for me being a major animal lover) - they won't listen to you and will lazily, follow trails already created.

My pony, Kailua, was a stubborn little 6 year old girl. Fitting, as I will admit to being stubborn my damn self. I had to tear her away from trails the entire time and if I wasn't paying attention for a minute, boom! Back on a trail. The last 30 minutes of our ride, I thought about this and how it applies to my own life as well as some folks I've seen around me.

I came to New York to freelance and simply to be here. First "job" I had was bartending. Second job, bartending. Of course, I did makeup as well, but bartending was my main source of income. A poor source of income at that. Surprisingly. When the bar I was working at closed in October I decided to just freelance. Even if it meant eating ramen noodles and never socializing, that's what I was going to do. That was 6 months ago. Since then, I've kind of floated. Can't say I've followed any trails, but while riding Kailua and thinking about what he had said, I realized I hadn't really created any trails either. I look at those around me who follow trails, work the "normal" jobs that they hate but enable them to have money. And I look at those other folks around me, the creatives, who have somehow blazed their own trails. They, the creative folks are a testament that it can be done and seem far happier and far more at peace. Looking back, I feel like I've been stuck at a crossroads for the past 6 months and without even realizing it, I was waiting for someone else to take the reins and push me in one direction or another.

Last night as I drifted off to sleep I had a flashback of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (I think), where he throws sand out from that cavern in the side of the mountain to "test" where his feet might stand so he could obtain the chalice. That's precisely what I feel like. Throwing a bit of sand out in front of me and having faith that despite any past struggles, I will be able to create my own trails. Of course my mom thinks I'm nuts and worries but I truly believe that life ultimately rewards those who take risks. I could never live a conventional lifestyle anyhow. It's just not in my blood.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

My, what spirit she has...

I just came across a photo on pinterest of a model I worked with, which led me to google her name and stumble upon the video we worked on that I did makeup and hair for. What an amazing late night surprise! She was such an absolute joy the entire time. Everything you see here is purely her playing and just having fun.

Babyghost 2012 S/S
Photographer: Jonathan Waiter
Model: Xiao Wen Ju
Makeup/Hair: Risa Robins-Moloney

The bird, bird, bird. The bird is the word.

What now seems like ages ago, a hummingbird woke me up one morning. Since that tiny flutter of duo chromatic color entered my world, I have, albeit slowly, learned to pay even closer attention to every species of animal that makes itself known to me. As I touched on in my previous post, spirit animals have seemed to make quite the splash in society in recent times. I once had an Ethnic studies teacher in college who drilled into our heads the importance of being able to identify the world around you. It was a literature course and the purpose of his statement was to aid in our writing. Rather than writing simply about "the way the wind whistled through the tree tops", the more one knows about their environment, the more descriptive their writing will be and thus the picture painted, more colorful: "the way the wind whistled through the leaves of the ancient Oak trees." More information will always equate to a more definite and better understood shape and a more fleshed out story.

In this day and age, it's likely there aren't many people who haven't heard of "The Secret" or "The Law of Attraction". Like attracts like and all that jazz. Well, if we are to agree with this universal law (I do), then it would only make sense that that which surrounds us is "like" us, at least at that time. Being alive, we all grow, and thus we all change. Rarely does one live a static existence, for we would not be alive if we did. As we change, our surroundings must change as well. I find, that one of thee most helpful ways to gauge our own energy is through animals. Regardless of whether you live in a city, suburbia or the country, nature is always effervescent. Even in and around New York, a sprawling metropolis with people seemingly stacked on top of one another in this concrete jungle, nature exists. I've come across hawks, falcons, ravens, ladybugs, squirrels, blue jays, owls, groundhogs, rabbits, bats, dragonflies, woodpeckers, caterpillars, butterflies, snakes, spiders, fireflies, chipmunks and countless other birds I haven't identified.

Groundhog, ladybug and dragonfly love

Some make themselves KNOWN. I went to Ohio for Thanksgiving and quite literally was followed by ravens the entire time. These birds (they're a type of crow) are loud and if you don't see them, they make sure you hear them. More recently, I was woken up every single day for 2 weeks by the voice of ravens in the tree outside my window. Where ravens are loud and you'd have to be deaf not to notice them, Hawks seem to be majestically silent as they ride the winds, wings spread, enjoying their flight.


While some animals can and will present themselves to you in the flesh, if you live in the US, it's unlikely that you will come face to face with say, a tiger or an octopus (unless at a zoo or aquarium). Regardless, if you possess that energy, they will show themselves to you whether through images, conversations etc. What made me revive and dive deeper into the spirit animal realm was what I suppose can only be described as what some might call a "vision". I've tried to meditate since it was suggested to me when I was in the hospital 8 years ago. It never seemed to work and always frustrated me. I'm still not entirely fantastic at it and either forget or am too tired to "practice" on a regular basis. However, at some point last year I was wide awake in my bedroom, frustrated by some condition of my life at the time and I flopped on my bed and closed my eyes. The second my eyelids shut I saw a white barn owl who flapped her wings once and then raised them. As they raised, the owl turned into the moon. I should mention that I was 100% sober and my first thought was "OMG! How cool! WTF was that? Did I finally do this meditation thing right? Without even trying?" Since my eyes were closed, and though I wasn't sleeping, my next inclination was to google "owl meaning dream dictionary" One way or another, I ended up following some rabbit hole that led me to spirit animals. The rest is history.

A stingray and a frog came to play with me in Miami this summer

Since that point, if an animal makes themselves known in my world, whether in the flesh, in a dream/vision or through synchronicity (my personal rule is randomly seeing/hearing about a species 3 times within say a week) I study them. I look at the color, think about how they move, what they're known for, how they eat, how they protect themselves, what their skills are etc and I also google *insert species here* spirit animal. I will say that every single animal that has made itself known, perfectly reflected what I needed to see/learn/be during that time period. So you might be curious to explore why you bought that Fox spirit hood instead of the Cheetah one or why a spider scared the hell out of you and made you squeal like a little girl. There's a lot more to this world, if only we would stop texting and tweeting for a minute to pay attention to life. What animals have you been ignoring?

Linkage: As we all know, the internet is filled with a plethora of websites and tons of information. The most useful site I have found relating to spirit animal guides if you wish to explore on your own, is Shamanic Journey Not to say there aren't other good ones, but this is my personal favorite.

You remind me of the babe...

"What babe?"
"The babe with the power."

I realize that not everyone has seen Labyrinth. Truly a sin, but if you're younger than me (31), you are forgiven so long as you watch it at your first given (or taken) opportunity. Where generations younger than myself have Harry Potter, we grew up with the likes of Labyrinth, The Neverending Story, The Princess Bride and Drop Dead Fred to name a few. Now, while I don't exactly remember the story of The Polar Express, what I do recall is pertinent to this post. As children, magic is everywhere to us and as we grow up, unfortunately, a lot of us seem to lose our sight. Our vision. Perhaps Peter Pan, or rather the movie "Hook" is a better reference. Tinkerbell's voice has inundated my brain all of a sudden, "Fly Peter! Think happy thoughts!"

Since moving to Brooklyn, though it definitely existed prior, Magic has returned to becoming part of my everyday existence. In conversation with a friend, he debated with me that not everything is magical, not everything means something. To be entirely technical, while I suppose not EVERYTHING has to mean something, I mostly disagree. I think it depends, like many other things in life, on one's perspective. It is my belief that we are all our own gods and goddesses composed of a myriad of pieces of the past. Each our own collage of the echos of both shadows and rays from different days. Enter big bang theory. Enter Faerie dust (and "religion" ashes to ashes, dust to dust). Therefore, if we wish to live a life bursting with meaning (I do), we shall. If we do not wish to live a life bursting with meaning, we won't. It is our right and choice to blind ourselves at our will. We are responsible for our own awareness, or lack thereof and for creating our world.

Anyone who's followed me for awhile knows I've spoken highly of and praised the works of author Paulo Coelho. He is one such being I can refer to who has injected my consciousness with the need to be aware of signs. Learn the language of life. It can only help you. Much like some people speak and understand only Chinese, and others speak and understand only English, everyone's own personal language of life, may vary. I do however believe that there is an overlap (which mostly corresponds to nature). In fact, look around at fashion and trends.

Last spring I was shopping with a friend in Urban Outfitters and noticed a ton of necklaces with Pyrite. Pyrite, or Fool's Gold was the first mineral I fell in love with. As a kid, I was obsessed with shiny things and coin collecting. I had a pink "treasure box" that I locked away all my foreign coins people had given me from their journeys, my special 1943 silver pennies, pyrite and a plethora of sequins I had spent hours crawling on the floor of Macy's collecting while my mom tried on clothes. I don't remember where the pyrite came from, but it was my favorite. Seeing it on necklaces at urban outfitters made me laugh. Outside, there were street vendors selling amethyst necklaces. Gemstones have been around for ages, and used in jewelry for ages but only in the past year have I begun to learn more about them. Pretty as they may be, it is not necessarily their physical beauty that's important. Spirit hoods anyone? Yea. Those have popped up and made quite the appearance in the past year. Some people love the trend, others hate it. I've seen on twitter (and made myself) many jokes pertaining to spirit animals "My spirit animal is *insert celebrity name here*."

Now, I come from a more liberal, "hippy" family. I was taught about Astrology for as long as I can remember. Growing up I recall my aunt wanting to buy me tarot cards, yet being the angst filled teenager I existed as, I held no interest. Even coming out of the hospital trying to heal from the chemo, I was taken to meditation classes, given a Hematite bracelet (works wonders with strengthening blood flow), encouraged to drink Pomegranate juice (anti-oxidants), and had quite a few acupuncture sessions. Though life has tried to make me pay attention for quite some time now, it has only been in this past year, being broke in Brooklyn that encouraged me to explore, embrace and utilize the resources nature provides us with.

Gemstones, are magical. Animals, are magical. Trees and plants, are magical. Nature, that which is natural, is magical. Long before doctors as we know them ever existed, people would go see the village shaman to help cure their ailment. While there may be certain herbs and "old school remedies" a majority of us might be aware of, there is so much more we can, as individuals learn and utilize if only we'd take the time to step back and revisit that which ancient civilizations were adept with.

So I suppose you can view this as an introduction of sorts...because "magic" has become such a pertinent and constant part of my world, I will be sharing various facets as they pertain to my own life both here and on youtube in hopes that it might encourage some to take a look at their own lives through more detailed, wonder-filled and childlike eyes.


Yes, I'm behind in posting this...

Flash ^

Sans Flash ^

Products Used

Urban Decay Primer Potion
Juiced Eyeshadow (MAC) with #222 Brush (MAC)
Pistachio Eyeshadow (Senna Cosmetics) with #213 brush (MAC)
Motif Eyeshadow (MAC) with Angled Fluffy brush (OCC)
Vanilla Eyeshadow (MAC) with #266 brush (MAC)
Blush #001 (Yaby) with 219 Brush (MAC)
Zero 247 Liner (Urban Decay)
#4 Aqualiner (Makeup Forever)
Fleshtoned Eyeliner
Spring Garden eyeshadow (Yaby) with #266 Brush (MAC)
Black Mascara

Foolish Me Blush (MAC) with Blush Brush
Motif Eyeshadow (MAC) as highlight and on apples

Coral Lipliner
Queen Liptar (OCC)
Banjee Liptar (OCC)
Pink Bronze pigment (MAC)

Thursday, March 8, 2012


Welcome to my little slice of the web! In starting a new Youtube channel, I figured it was only fitting to also start a brand spanking new blog as well. As most of you reading this probably know, I've pretty much been MIA from most internet communities for the past year. I've struggled with writing versus not, explaining versus not and I've finally settled on sitting down and doing so. It was actually a post by young lady last night that inspired me to do so. Those that "follow" me know I tend to be a more positive person. At least, I try to be. Someone once commented on twitter that I always seem happy, that I put out nothing but sunshine. I responded with something along the lines of  "Life is too short, and there's enough emission of garbage into the collective consciousness of our world, so why would I wish to contribute to that? Negativity seems to spread like wildfire and can be extremely damaging, very quickly."

Truth be told, I am a pretty positive person. My glass is nearly always half full and even when it rains, I love to dance and jump in the puddles. However, it can become difficult when you have an internet following who at times, seems to expect or desire constant updates. There are some who are fantastic at maintaining their presence. I sit and look back on the past 10 years and realize I've never been one of those people. When I don't feel like my good, positive, healthy self, I tend to withdraw into my shell and disappear. For no matter how positive or happy a person may exist in moments, everyone goes through things at times because at the end of the day, we're all human. I have stayed away until now, because I don't believe I would have put out anything of value, and I don't believe in expelling negativity into a world that already contains so much of it.

I've always believed that everything happens for a reason. Cliche yes, but it is my belief. I stopped posting because my adsense was cut last January. I commend those that do youtube for free, but it is time consuming and when you're struggling to make ends meet, the last thing you have energy to do is make videos for free to please people you don't actually know. Or at least, I lacked the energy and desire to do so. Also, being a highly spiritual being, I'm a firm believer in signs. If life stops me from doing something, I tend to believe there's a greater reason behind it. This year that I've had "off" allowed me to better develop my perception and skill set. It enabled me to get to know more about myself and identify what it is I want to put out into the world from a more conscious standpoint. Bluntly put, New York has been ROUGH. However, I was taught to value myself in ways I never deemed possible before and learned to be resourceful in ways I had never imagined.  

Posting, has still been tough to do consistently. I was excited (still am), and thought I could just jump back into the swing of things. My own computer died a month after moving here and I've bounced between using a few different ones belonging to friends. The one in my possession now, though I'm grateful to have it, is extremely slow, especially with video so editing can be quite a long process. Last week, my electricity and heat were shut off because I didn't have money to pay the bills - told ya, NY has been rough. No electricity = no posting. I currently have 3 half filmed videos sitting in this machine that are begging to be posted and I have vowed to myself that they will be by Sunday.

So, there's my story, my reason, my explanation. Please bear with me as I attempt to spread my wings once again.