Tag Archives: reading to kids


I do Love LA

I have been very quiet here, and it is because I felt I had nothing to say. September has been full of uncertainty and transition. My husband James took a job up in San Francisco last week, a position he was interviewing with for about a month. In that period, I did not know if we would stay or go. We were in limbo, and the waiting was so stressful. All of the goals I had for September were put off, after all how can you sign up for classes if you are not sure you will still be here? 

At this same time my trainer Mike was going through transitions of his own, moving into a new apartment and we were not able to work out. I still kept up walking, running, and yoga but I found the more I got stressed out about my possible move the more I slacked off a little. My diet is still on point, right now that is the only arena in my life I have control over. I love my LA home and I am very sad to go, but on the same note I look forward to a brand new adventure in San Francisco. I am so proud of my husband James, he truly is a determined go getter and relentless when it comes to getting what he wants in his career. 

There is a quiet kind of loneliness when you find out you are moving to a brand new place. I cannot explain it, but all of a sudden for a fleeting moment you feel very alone in the world.

I knew with Mike’s transitions and my own impending move that our workouts would be coming to an end soon, I felt that this possible move to San Francisco would happen and it did. It was exactly four years ago James and I made the move from our beloved big apple to the city of angels. NYC to LA in a span of three weeks time in September 2010. The timing was just too similar, and I felt that this would happen exactly like it did back in 2010. My intuition was on par as usual. At the time I was so sad to leave NYC behind, but I felt it was time for a change. I grew to fall in love with sunny Los Angeles. Leaving is not as effortless now.

My trainer and friend Mike and I will keep in touch, and we are still planning on working on my goals from afar, and I plan to come down to LA to take my surfing lessons, trapeze classes etc. I also have a lot of goals for my new life in San Francisco, to begin this project with a new city and that iconic Golden Gate as my backdrop. I will talk more about my  new goals in the near future. I am forever grateful to my Mike who began as a stranger I worked with and hardly knew, to trainer, coach, and friend. Now I consider him a friend for life. Distance does not take that away. When I become close friends with someone, I am that forever. I thank him for his patience, time, and kindness, and for giving me the keys to fitness. 

Mike my trainer and friend and  adorable Apollo

My last ten pound charity is wrapping up, I received more books from a generous friend Mary who delivered them to my work. She is a lovely soul I met one day at work, and we have kept in touch. Even though her life is busy, she took the time to deliver a bag of beautiful books for children. I will deliver all the books to Reading to Kids before we make the drive up the Pacific Coast Highway to our new home by the bay.

beauty by the bay

So much to think about my head is spinning. I may just go to the pool today and erase the day.
Love and Light
across the miles always


I am still doing my book drive for Reading to Kids, and I am taking my time to get the most books. I will pick and announce my next ten pound charity within a month. I am so grateful for all the book donations from friends and new friends. Today I received a box of children’s books from someone I met at the nail salon. We began a conversation and I told her what I was working on, and she did not hesitate to offer to help by donating books.  In a mere moment in a nail salon I am granted a new friend. I am so grateful. I look forward to treating her to coffee and cake in the near future. Be kind to others, and sometimes being kind rewards you with new friends.

Children’s books are magical

On the subject of the kindness of strangers and strangers becoming new friends. I have to give a shout out to my wonderful friend Amy. She and I also met in a nail salon, she approached me when she heard I too was from NYC. When she tells the story she makes me cry, because she explains it was my kindness to the staff at the nail salon that caught her attention. In return I was gifted an amazing friend and I am so thankful she said hello to me on that sunny afternoon. Amy is one of my dearest friends and my first friend in California. 

Amy and me. 

Off for now. Tomorrow is my first workout with Mike my trainer and friend. He had to move so we took a break, and I look forward to getting back to the grind. I have been doing yoga and cardio but I have slacked on weight bearing exercises. I will be sore, this I know.

I am also grateful to Mike for taking the time out of his busy schedule and move to train me. His kindness definitely never goes unnoticed. It is amazing how people you meet become your good friends, people you may never have expected to be. You never know who you may meet around the corner or around the world. I love that about life. 

Love and Light


Good Morning and happy weekend to all. I had my weigh in today, and I am now officially 165 lbs. I have lost 2 more lbs and that brings me to my lowest weight to date. I am down 45 lbs. I am so happy, even through recent female water weight, a trip to Las Vegas and some fun down in Orange County with James and Patrick, I still did it. I am far from done though, many fitness milestones to accomplish, a fitness bucket list to go through, and more weight to lose and charities to sponsor. I am still collecting books for Reading To Kids.

Off today. I have had a major challenge, our refrigerator is broken so it has been take out every night. Today they are coming to hopefully fix it. I look forward to cooking again soon.  I like to make Vegetarian Soups For The Soul.

Hoping the repair man will only be here for a bit, I want to go to the pool. Love and light to all.

Love and Light


Good morning to all on this gifted Friday. I am away in Las Vegas for the weekend. This week I have decided everything I do I will do with 100% of my heart and soul. From the creative things I do, the physical, the mundane. If I am putting in my time and I putting my heart into it as well. I am also making some lists of larger things to accomplish in regards to my fitness journey, personal goals, volunteering and charity ideas. My day to day workouts with be harder too, and I will be pushing more. I am proud of how far I have come but I am reaching beyond the stars I love to gaze at. I will be kind to everyone that crosses my path, and I will try to exercise patience as well.

I feel I was stronger and worked harder with my workouts with Mike this week. My toe feels like it is healing, and we ran on Wednesday again for the first time in forever. No pain, and I feel great. We are working on pull-ups with the TRX.  Mike is helping me inch my way into a full pull up, and when I am able to master that I will be taking trapeze classes. It has been on my bucket list since NYC to take Trapeze Classes. I first saw the Trapeze School at Chelsea Piers and said I have to do that. I was actually planning on beginning a NYC bucket list blog and then we moved suddenly to Los Angeles. When I moved I saw the Trapeze School was also here at the Santa Monica Pier. I noted I could still take my classes but quickly realized I needed to work on my strength first. Side note about Mike my trainer. He is honestly a gift and anyone who works out with him will be lucky indeed. I hope he gets so many clients in the future, I am doing things I never knew I could do. I hope one day my best friend Melissa Bender from Melissa Bender Fitness can meet him, they both are my fitness inspirations. They also both put up with my issues and tell me to eat more, something that I am working on. No one can go it alone. It starts alone, but having a support network and friends who believe in you makes the journey more of a joy ride.

Wednesday was the best day ever. I met so many kind people who want to help me collect children’s books, and it continues on. I am so grateful for the kind people I am meeting. I was more excited about getting all the books for kids than leaving for Las Vegas. I tend to be a little, or a lot out of the box. More on my book drive soon. I was on my way home and I saw a man with a bag and I had to take a photo, it was a sign that I am moving in the right direction.

Off from my upgrade to a suite at the Orleans Hotel to the Bellagio this afternoon. Meeting up with my husbands best friend Ted who shares a birthday with James.  This suite is heaven. I ordered a pot of coffee from room service and I am in blogging heaven.

I made friendly chit chat with the gentleman at the front desk and got this upgrade.

The pot is always half full

Happy Friday to all
Love and light


Good Morning to all on this beautiful Saturday. I woke up a bit early to do some reading, and I went to bed at 3 am like I used to always do back in NYC. Now having  some needed coffee and writing a quick blog post in before heading out the door. 

I love to read, and I love to collect books, especially at thrift stores and used book stores. Books are treasures to me, and when I am in a book store I feel like a kid in a candy store. I remember my best friend Melissa Bender and I would always go to Half Price books in Pittsburgh PA and find the best loot. I often go here in West Hollywood to the local thrift stores and I always find the best books. I could walk out, spend less than ten dollars and feel like I won a million.

Melissa reminded me that people may want to donate books for Reading to Kids from afar.  My first intention was not to ask for books on this blog for my book drive, but it is for a good cause so if anyone would like to mail a book for children K-5th grade I would be very grateful. So she nudged me to include all the info in case anyone would like to mail books for kids, so here it is all the info from Reading To Kids non profit organization and Charlie Orchard the Managing Director. I am grateful to him and everyone at Reading to Kids for the support. Reading to the children was such a lovely experience.



“We very happily accept donations of books for Kindergarten through 5th graders, so long as the books are new (or in such great shape that they can pass as new).  We only give new books to the kids so they can feel a sense of pride and ownership in the books they earn by attending our reading clubs.

As long as the books are new (or can pass as new), anyone can send them to our address in my email signature. 
When people box up the books to mail them to us, we’d also like them to fill out the attached “In-Kind Donation Form.doc” form and include it with the books.  In this way we can track our book donors and I can mail to them a thank you letter / charitable giving receipt.”

Reading to Kids 
1600 Sawtelle Boulevard, Suite 210
Los Angeles, California 90025
Phone: (310) 479-7455
Fax: (310) 479-7435 
E-mail: inforeadingtokids.org 
Website comments: webmasterreadingtokids.org


It has been one year since I began this project and blog, and I am so happy where I am and where I am going, my journey is far from over. One year ago I was just too embarrassed to post my weight and before photos, and my trainer Mike explained to me to be authentic I have to come clean even if it feels awkward. One year later I am so happy I have those photos to chart my progress, and even though I am trying now to focus on fitness I am glad I have a before weight as well. Now at 167 lbs,  It is fun to look back, and  look forward into the future as I envision where this is leading me. I am reaching for the clouds.

This week I worked out with my Trainer Mike on Tuesday and Wednesday and we are really pushing it now, and I admit this week I struggled a little. I was running late on Tuesday and did not eat enough, and I am discovering the role nutrition plays on your workouts. I was a bit sluggish and off, and on Wednesday I ate more but I got a little sick to my stomach. Sometimes I notice if I eat too much right before my workouts, or if I drink too much water it affects me in a not so positive way. So now I am on a quest to find what works, a year later for tougher workouts. Mike is completely patient with me, and I am grateful for his guidance and knowledge, he is an excellent teacher and I cannot believe one year as gone by. 

I am still trying to collect books for my book drive, and I have two bags of beautiful books thanks to generous and talented friends. I need to hang more flyer’s and get many more. I am in no rush to do so, my goal is to get as many books as humanly possible. My next charity will be announced after the books are delivered to Reading to Kids.

Last night was one of those nights when I needed sleep bad, and now today I feel completely renewed and refreshed. I am always learning and evolving in my quest to be as fit I can be. Sleep is one of those things when you are expelling so much energy that is non negotiable. Do not skimp on sleep ever.

Happy Thursday and keep moving forward.
Love and Light to all

One year ago I posted my first before photos, and here they are now.

JULY  10, 2013

JULY 10, 2013


I have to remind myself how far I have come
even if some numbers are still high
I am not a number
I am a soul
with a body
I am trying to train

I cheated and had pizza. I hardly ate all day and decided to splurge when my husband ordered pizza. If you have followed my journey in the past year I have rarely deviated from my diet and lifestyle. 

I am going through some struggles at the moment and I gave in. This is not a weekend long splurge, just one meal and one time. I am trying to figure somethings out and make a plan. Next month is my one year Anniversary of this blog and I will get past the minor setbacks that are occurring in my life and make all of my goals a reality. I am not down or out, I just have to set the bar higher and work harder. I will be seeking balance as I try to accomplish multiple goals.

If I was not feeling bad already I had to go and throw salt on my open wounds. I finally had my fat percentage and measurements done today. I never did them a year ago so I do not have a starting point to compare them to. I was highly disappointed and I felt like all of my accomplishments of the year were taken away. I felt like I was back at square one. My total fat was 40%. I thought, wow, what the hell was it to begin with? My lower abs were 37, (high) my arm 12, my hips 42 and my thigh was 25. The guy at the gym was rushed for time and only did the right side of my body. He did not do around my upper waist around my rib cage so I did that, and that was 32.  According to an online BMI chart mine is 30.1 
The numbers really left me feeling down, especially with my personal issues I am dealing with now. I almost cried in my coconut water.

A friend once told me life is compromised of hills and valleys. I am stuck in a temporary valley at the moment, but I will climb out even if my fingernails end up bloody and torn, because I will believe that I can. I have come a long way in the last year and I will not let some little occurrence derail me and leave me stranded down in some creak in the bottom of a valley. I will climb high and believe in me. I am a majestic dolphin not a whimpering guppy. I will swim to the surface.

So those are my thoughts at the moment. I have been MIA lately and not been keeping up with my posts. I did volunteer with Reading To Kids last Saturday and I now have two bags of books for the children. I am hoping to have much more when I am finished with the book drive. Volunteering was very rewarding and I feel grateful for the opportunity to do so. I am grateful to friend and children’s author Benjamin Harper for his kind donation of his own books. 

No weigh in tomorrow. I am giving myself a break since I have been stuck at 169 lbs. I was told sometimes deviating from your diet tricks your metabolism so tomorrow I am back on track with some healthy changes. Starting now from square one and working my way towards my Birthday on the Winter Solstice, which is six months from tomorrow. That is the next time I will take my measurements and fat caliber test. 

Love and Light
Never Give Up


This is the lovely flyer my friend made for my book drive for Reading to Kids. I am so excited to start collecting books, books the children earn through reading clubs. I love books, all books. 

I believe a book can take a child and transport them to a place where dreams come true, when they are unable to travel beyond the four walls of their own dwellings.

Off to have coffee and do a little poetry writing, work out later. No rest for me. 
Happy Sunday to all, much love and light.


Good Morning to all. Since I am finally closer to my ten pound goal, and 40 pound total goal I am starting the leg work on my book drive for Reading to Kids. My wonderful friend and soul sister Xiomara made me this beautiful flier. I am so blessed to know her.

Tonight my trainer Mike and I work out, and I am ready to keep up the faster pace. I went running and walking yesterday and forgot water and that was a major mistake. It is hot now, and dehydration kicks in fast.

Off for my day, love and light to all.


Good Tuesday Morning to all. My next ten pound charity is the wonderful organization Reading To Kids. I am holding a book drive, collecting brand new books for children ages K-5. I am currently three pounds from my next weight milestone but I wait til I am a few pounds beyond the ten pound mark. I am now doing the legwork for the book drive and trying to get the word out. I also plan on volunteering in the near future and reading to the kids.

Here is some information about Reading To Kids.

Reading to Kids is a grassroots organization dedicated to inspiring underserved children with a love of reading, thereby enriching their lives and opportunities for success in the future.  To this end, Reading to Kids gathers on average 876 children and 367 volunteers at reading clubs on the second Saturday of every month at seven Los Angeles elementary schools.
At the monthly reading clubs, pairs of volunteers read aloud to small groups of children, while their parents receive training on how to encourage their children to read at home.  Kids, parents, teachers, and school libraries receive book donations at the end of the reading clubs.  These are important donations, as 60 percent of low-income homes do not have age-appropriate reading materials for children.
Since its inception in 1999, Reading to Kids has given more than 124,442 prize books to children who attend the reading clubs, donated more than 22,469 hardcover books to school libraries, and our volunteers have spent more than 145,899hours reading to kids.  Click here to see our entry on Wikipedia. 
Reading to Kids is incorporated as a nonprofit corporation under the laws of the state of California and has been classified as an organization described in section 501(c)(3) of the federal Internal Revenue Code. The organization is exempt from both state and federal taxes; our tax ID number is 95-4758698.  
Off for now. Tonight is after work I am working out with my trainer Mike. I have been gluten free and eating completely clean during the week, and I have had amazing energy. 

Love and Light
Happy Tuesday to all