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2020. The madness of this year encircled me; it did not permeate me. I was too consumed around the intense fears that rattled my pregnancy. I remember looking for a therapist and reaching out to several by email – sifting through the responses, one in particular stands out. A pretty blonde woman in her fifties (I googled photos to see if she appeared sympathetic, because of course one can gauge empathy from a psychologists website biography photo) wrote me back noting how difficult it was to be pregnant, ‘especially with the state of the world’.... The coronavirus pandemic had yet to hit the US but was days away from detonating, a high-stakes presidential election approached.. I knew all of this, and yet I didn’t even know what she was talking about – I couldn’t even acknowledge the state of things occurring outside of myself. In the self-absorbed caverns of my mind - the world whirled wildly around MY life, MY fear- the changes, the unknown a predator threatening my every thought. My plaguing mind a cyclone, gaining speed and intensity with every thought it touched.

The fear came to a screeching halt with guttural screams—mine—between contractions surging through my core-- the moment seven pounds and one ounce of sticky new life was placed on my chest. The soft cries (his) and the gasping sobs (mine) met for the first time and every facet of my life would alter.

Outside, the mask-faced world kept spinning. My parents stood in the parking lot amid the strict pandemic no-visitors rule, while I, an hour after birth and completely depleted, clutched my sweet, swaddled baby against the scratchy hospital-gown, pressed into my chest, presenting him through the glass to the parking lot below. Though a few floors up, I could see their eyes glittering behind their sunglasses. That warm June afternoon, my husband’s gentle protective arm around my shoulder to steady my wobbly legs beneath me... faith floated between all of us. Hope strung from one generation to the next, the strength of my parent’s love threaded to me, my husband, looping to the tiny baby in my arms. This new life that I’d spent months agonizing over – fearing his arrival, withstanding the birth, looking upon the life changes with such dread....it never occurred to me that it would be a perfect instant, twinkling in time, amidst the madness of this year. I never grasped that this fleeting moment would surge with peace, with hope. That the thing I’d feared the most, would be an anchor in a swelling sea of uncertainty. This tiny precious being, would become my one sure, my one pure thing. Enveloped tightly within that swaddle blanket was the heartbeat of MY world.

The one around me could wait.

Hard Work, Heart Work

"Heart Work"
Pun, Intended.

Does it pour from you?
Explore from you?
Are you saturated?
Does it pulse through,
the blue
your Snow White skin?
Do you feel the power,
Of your own power,

What's on Your Wrist?


Holiday time means I roll up my sleeves and knit; I’m hand-crafting gifts, custom orders, and even some luxurious cozies for me!  And when I roll up my sleeves, there’s nothing like a natural, wooden timepiece with sleek design and superior craftsmanship to gawk at.  With a large face and slim bracelet design, I glance down at my Jord Cassia wood watch in rich walnut wood with rose gold hardware, and know I need to get focused at the tasks at hand…and yet suddenly I’m distracted by it’s beauty!

I just love how feminine the watch sits next to a lace sleeve.

Casual days or a little dolled up, my Cassia from Jord always brings life to my looks!

The unique design with interlaced wood and metal links brings forth an unparalleled level of quality. I am motivated by its simplicity and careful details.  It’s not everywhere that one can purchase such a beautiful, affordable, luxurious timepiece; it’s only at Jord Watches.

Now, for a limited time only, you too can enter to win your own Jord wood watch right here!: https://www.woodwatches.com/g/cabernetandclarity

Even if you're not a lucky winner, you'll instantly receive 25% off a wood watch of your own!  What do I love about that?? Everyone wins!

Shop the full collection of Jord Wood Watches here: http://www.woodwatches.com/#cabernetandclarity

Luxury Wooden Watch

Day 31: The Farewell

"So it's fare thee well my own true love,
We'll meet another day, another time.
It ain't the leavin'
That's a-grievin' me
But my true love who's bound to stay behind"

-Bob Dylan



As I embarked on this composing crusade, I told myself things like "you can go for it, but you'll never finish it....Attempt it, just know that thirty-one days of published content is about as likely as..."

And here I am. Day thirty-one and I'm just as shocked that I made it here as you are.  I took this seriously: purchased a new laptop and built a blog two days before, seriously. And yet, contributing to a purpose, a discipline such as this, was more a gift to me.  It lead me on a roadway back to myself, it pushed me to compose words again, and it motivated and inspired me on most days.  Other days, I felt stuck, tired, unwilling... resisting the acceleration of the vehicle I was propelling towards my intention. 

Conquering this fear and doubt has only made me challenge my thought process with other varying elements that have restrained me from striving for more.

It's farewell for now. 

But only for now.

Day 30: Death

I recall the earsplitting ring of the phone that night, followed by the gut-wrenching sound of my mother's shriek.

He was gone.

There had been an accident.  He was the only involved and as I imagined the metal of the Tacoma scraping against the stone wall before it plunged into the water beneath him, I had to squeeze, wrinkle my eyes shut, sealing them tighter and tighter in a failed attempt to expunge the gruesome visions.  My cognizance juxtaposed; I longed to know the details and also prayed the images would vacate my agitated mind.  In this era of time, the imagination labored, sweating on and endless wheel; a treadmill of speculation.  The anxiety, palpable.

My thoughts shift from gruesome to pure pain and I relive the moment I disclosed my love for him, for the first and only time in our relationship, a mere nine hours earlier.  It was a foreboding of sorts as we never really talked like that, and I recall a dizziness; as if I hovered over my body, spectating as I embraced his frail frame for what would be the last time.  And somehow, I knew it would be.  He was exposed, his dignity deflated.  He'd always swelled with pride, never desiring to present any weakness, and as a result, he was unbreakable, immortal in our eyes.  Except for that summer daybreak when we faced the harsh reality that the ticks on the clock with him in our lives were always scarce.  We'd fallen into his facade of perpetual existence, and were proven wrong.

The days that followed were hazy and despairing.  Hoards of people made appearances.  I grew ill, my state of mind gnawing at my well-being, coughing until the muscles in my side shred: torn up the way our family would be, at the loss of this man we so loved.  I spent the next few days hunched over in both my mental and physical state of being: my thoughts sickening me and my heart splitting, aching...the pain unfathomable.  

The wild, spirited nature of someone larger than life had vacated this world, and we all knew our own lives would cease to be the same.

My face compulsorily spreads into a smile when I think about those carefree summer days when he would pick us up in his truck, ask us to hold the wheel while he lazily spit sunflower seeds out the driver's window, whistling to every tune on the radio and making us pee our pants with laughter.  There were also moments of seriousness; I have a clear-as-day memory of him telling us not to cry when he dies, and that everyone dies, but to laugh when his time came, and to remember the good times.  It's hard to fathom that this conversation is so seared into my mind as it occurred when I was likely six or seven years old, and yet I guess it was one of those moments frozen in time, never to be forgotten.  I'm sure I didn't even understand it at the time, and if I am truthful with myself, I still can't understand or accept his passing.  It is a major area within me that I have yet to find peace.  A decade elapsed and I'm left feeling continuously robbed at every moment he isn't here.  His existence was stripped from us, and so often I beg the skies for omens.

Every now and then, a hawk appears, soaring a little too low to the soil, and I wonder if it's him, nearby. 

I wonder if he's there to remind me about all those times he took us fishing, always giving us the big catch, or the times he'd jump out and scare us so badly we were mute for what felt like hours...and yet once recovered, we'd gleefully run back for more.  His back massages, arm-tickles, his little giggle laugh, his extraordinary fervor for life, and his love for children. 

We didn't say "I love you," because it never needed to be said.  It was always inherently felt.

What I'd give for just one more laugh with him, one more conversation, one more scare.

And I realize;

I don't require a bird sighting to awaken in me, the truth.  That I'll never forget my uncle.

Day 29: Religion

Peace within, unwavering inherent faith in oneself, that is my denomination.
Church is a hushed Sunday morning, burrowed in pajamas, leisurely savoring coffee, a sanctuary built together.
Our vows a ritual of authentic conversation.

Might not appear quite like yours, and yet it bears truth and love above all, with a solid intent on kindness.  

My belief in divinity is simplistic.  Sacred.  It is a keen connection to self and an awareness of the repercussions of all actions.

It is clean, uncomplicated, guiltless.

It is the only way I know how.

Day 28: Beauty

I am a person with over 13,000 photos on my phone's camera roll.  I am a person who cannot resist a supple suede boot, a heap of soft yarns, a trending accessory that strikes me.  I am someone who grows obsessed instantaneously.  Formerly, I saw it as a pitfall.. I am drawn to so many "things," which can be regarded as materialistic.  Working in an industry that is heavily focused on outside appearances can make you feel that way.  Unless, of course you reshape your outlook and seek the positive connections between yourself and the allure of all in which you are drawn to.  I've come to understand and respect that it is a wonderful thing to appreciate beauty in all forms.  How we dress is an outward reflection of our emotional state.  Taking moments to appreciate the craftsmanship of a hand-knit garment, every stitch carefully curated, infused with the mood of the maker in that moment, wanting to replicate that beauty in your own individual way.  I aspire to embolden that quality in others, (and it often results in excessive shopping; for that I apologize in advance).  

On the contrary, what I've also grasped is how it has promoted a state of inner tranquility.  Appreciating beauty in the external somehow ricochets and introspection subsequently transpires.  You begin accept your strife with grace and a second-nature intuitiveness reminds you: only beauty rests on the other side. All those messy mishaps, heartaches and setbacks, requiring immeasurable courage and cleanup, embody beauty, waiting to be unearthed.  Peeling back at those moments, we catch sight of our power.  Those who SEE beauty, seek it in all things, even hardship.

And you ask yourself, is there anything more beautiful than that?