Tunes For Tuesday – Breast Cancer Awareness & Women’s Month: Tracy Chapman

Welcome to Tunes For Tuesday – It’s Women in Music for Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October!

Music, Tunes For Tuesday

Image: Daisy



For National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I’m highlighting some of the great women in music.  While I’m well aware that men also can be diagnosed with breast cancer (according the American Cancer Society the risk of breast cancer for men is 1 in 1,000 vs 1 in 8 for women), I figured that giving the spotlight to women for the month wasn’t a bad idea.

Before I started this series, I knew people with breast cancer but I’m exceptionally sad to say that I recently learned of both an elementary schoolmate passing away after a very long fight against breast cancer and yet another old elementary school mate being diagnosed with Stage 3 Breast Cancer.

I’m not close with either of these women but the news of both hit me very hard.  Cancer of every type is just awful.  There is a piece of my heart that is broken for these two women and the people that love them.  This brought the 1 in 8 women statistic very close to home.

In honor of all women and for Breast Cancer Awareness month, today’s Tunes For Tuesday pick is “Talkin’ ‘Bout A Revolution” by Tracy Chapman.  I think I played Tracy Chapman’s debut self titled album to death in 1988 and 1989.  IMHO, this album is definitely one that is often overlooked on the lists of perfect albums start to finish and even though this song never made it past #75 on the Billboard Chart, it is quietly powerful.  I hope the tables will start to turn in the revolution against Breast Cancer soon.

Enjoy this acoustic rendition:



What is one of your “battle cry” songs?

Friday’s Featured Female – 5 Bloggers You Should Know

Welcome to Friday’s Featured Female!

Friday's Featured Female, #FFF


This weekly series features inspirational stories from admirable women.  IMHO, it’s always good to be reminded of how strength, determination, hard work, heart and ingenuity can impact the quality of one’s life and I’m proud that these women will allow me to share their stories here.


Today’s Friday’s Featured Female is a little different this week.  Normally, I like to feature a guest post from a blogger about how and why they’ve committed to making health (in one way or another) a priority in their lives.  This week, I’ve just heard some awful news on a number of fronts that instead I wanted to spread a little love around the blogosphere so I’m featuring 5 Bloggers You Should Know.

These 5 bloggers have no idea that I’m featuring them today (and I’ve brazenly stolen images from each of their sites) but I believe that each one of these women are worth getting to know, virtually or otherwise.  Expand your blog horizons and get to know one or all of these fine ladies:



Anne is one smart, sharply dressed (she’s the girl who wears Louboutin’s; she doesn’t just covet them) animal lover.  Anne has been a blogger for quite some time and is exceptionally knowledgable about social media.  Her blog covers a wide variety of topics which include her Pomeranian, Teddy, entertainment and DIY.

I’ve been lucky enough to meet this dynamo IRL in LA and she’s made quite an impression on me.  I love that this girl has a ton of inner strength that shines through her sass and has a heart of gold that she’s open to share.  Get to know this very cool chick.


Ashley Pitt@ALadyGoesWest

A Lady Goes West

Ashley said she found my blog on the IDEA Inspired Bloggers Facebook Group but who knew that we both shared a moving across the country story (her from FL to San Francisco) at nearly the same time (2012)?  Ashley is a personal trainer who also likes food (those of you who eat to live vs. live to eat, I don’t get you).   Her WIAW posts feature food, real food and real portions of food and I like how she’s chronicling her adjustment to a new life, new city with fitness.  I’m hoping to meet this life twin sometime soon.


Natalie, Hello Day


I met the lovely Natalie at FitBlogLA last year.  This sweet and stunningly gorgeous mom of two is one of those people with an easiness that radiates out of her pores.  Natalie loves fitness but believes in living a life with purpose and positivity.  Natalie often talks about her workouts, eating healthfully and raising her kids.  Natalie loves to camp (and takes beautiful photos that even make me want to go camping more often – which is quite a feat!).  Reading Natalie’s blog makes you realize that life doesn’t need to be frenetic but can still be fantastic.  PS – If you’re a casting agent for child models, check out her children – OMG adorable!



Shannyn, Frugal Beautiful

I met Shannyn at FitBloggin’ 2013 when we wound up running in time together on a run around Portland.  Shannyn told me about how she moved from California to Chicago and how she became a blogger writing about what it was like to try to live a great life without a lot of money.  Shannyn is well known not only for her frugality blogging but she’s also a runner (she loves her Disney Runs and she’s run over 20 half marathons), a pug mama (like me – helping Shannyn with her recent Virtual Pug Run for charity was a no-brainer for me), a social media manager and well known speaker in the fitness and financial blogging circuit.  Shannyn is so very approachable both IRL and virtually – she writes with such a down-to-earth tone about everything (including her wedding planning) that you can’t help but want to be her friend.  Shannyn’s got wide appeal both as a human being and a blogger!

Christiana@SpillingCoffeeandDroppingThings, Christiana

I want to hug Christiana tightly the next time I see her.  She made me feel so unbelievably good and I’m not sure she knows it.  I met Christiana at Diva Night at Fleet Feet Sports in Burbank a few weeks ago and she gave me the biggest compliment by telling me that she was excited to meet me.  Christiana went on to tell me that she reads my blog and since we are connected on other forms of social media, even went to try November Project (before I have even gotten the chance to go).

I was so unbelievably humbled by Christiana’s kind words and was so happy she came to the event.  I’m pretty sure that many of us who blog, feel like we do it in a vacuum.  I love that blogosphere makes the world a community.  Christiana is fitness enthusiast (how we didn’t meet at BlogFest, I don’t know), likes Diana Krall (my husband’s a huge fan too; I’m a fan of Diana’s husband, Elvis Costello) and has an a-ha moment that brought her into fitness that is really inspiring.  I’m hoping that I get the chance to hang out (and work out) with this LA neighbor (who dreams of being a fitness instructor) sometime soon.

What blogger or well-known personality (writer, actor, instructor, teacher, business person, etc.) inspires you?

Would Someone Please Explain? Answers to 50 Questions.

Skin Trade, Duran Duran, lyrics, question, 50 Questions


The reason for this “strange behavior” is because I saw this 50 Questions post over on Christine’s blog LoveLifeSurf (who cribbed it from Alison@WritingWishing) and I started to “wonder and asked myself the question” so I figured I’d “explain”.  I like blog memes (see here and here) and if there’s a way I can incorporate some Duran Duran into a post then why not?


50 Questions and Answers:

1. What are you wearing?  The cliche WAHM outfit, fitness clothing.

Yoga pants,
2. Ever been in love? Yup, still am.
3. Ever had a terrible breakup? Yes.  Enough said there.
4. How tall are you? You mean short, right?  5′ 1″
5. How much do you weigh?  Let’s just say that I’m within the healthy weight range for my height and leave it at that.
6. Any tattoos? Nope.
7. Any piercings? Two in each ear.  The first ones were done at the mall with the typical earring gun.  The second ones were done in my friend’s basement with an ice cube and an earring.  Hurt like hell.  Rite of passage though for young girls, I think.
8. OTP (one true pair, favorite fictional couple)?   Because I’m woefully under read, I’ll make this movie related – Let’s just say it wouldn’t have been Andie and Blane from “Pretty In Pink” (Duckie was too good for Andie, IMHO) so I’d say Keith and Watts from “Some Kind of Wonderful”.

Some Kind Of Wonderful

Image: Douglas Coulter

9. Favorite show? Currently: “Parenthood”‘ Past: “The Shield”, “Nip/Tuck” or “Rescue Me” just to name a few  
10. Favorite bands?  See blog tagline and yes, this is a real holiday.

Duran Duran, Duran Duran Appreciation Day

Image: Mirella Stirvani

11. Something you miss? New York City – the city, friends and restaurants
12. Favorite song? Favorite Duran song: “Hold Back The Rain”; Semi-current song: “Pompeii” by Bastille
13. How old are you? 44.5 but feeling as old as dirt
14. Zodiac sign? Aquarius (Who didn’t love this clip from the 40 Year Old Virgin?)
15. Quality you look for in a partner? Patience, understanding, intelligence and humor and my guy’s got ‘em all.


Wedding picture from Studio 450 NYC 5-6-00

May 6, 2000 – Studio 450



16. Favorite Quote?  From Caroline Knapp, author of “Appetites: Why Women Want”

Caroline Knapp, Appetites: Why Women Want
17. Favorite actor? Current: Robert Downey, Jr.  The man can act, sing, has a sense of humor and has both personally and professionally recovered from a very personal battle of drug addiction.  I love comeback stories.
18. Loud music or soft? Depends on my mood.
20. Where do you go when you’re sad?  The couch or bed.  Sometimes, a yoga class or a run but not often enough.
21. How long does it take you to shower? If I could live in a hot shower, I would.  Not the best thing to admit when living in a state with a ridiculous drought.  I try to limit my showers to 5-10 minutes though (I get good thinking done there).
22. How long does it take you to get ready in the morning? I’m low maintenance – 10-20 minutes.  If I need to presentable, it might take longer (make-up eludes me).
23. Ever been in a physical fight?  I have a younger sister so, yes.
24. Turn on?  Smarts
25. Turn off? Bigotry

26. The reason I started blogging? As a way to keep occupied after moving cross country while helping my son adjust to a new school.


27. Fear?  Heights and flying.  The list keeps growing as I get older, I’m Jewish so it’s expected.
28. Last thing that made you cry?  Frustration over re-injuring my back.
29. Last time you said you loved someone?   This morning as Jay dropped Wild Boy off at school.
30. Meaning behind the name of your blog? I’m born on Valentine’s Day and I’m a Registered Dietitian.  No, it doesn’t hurt that Duran Duran have the word Valentine in The Reflex though.
31. Last book you read? This Is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper – thanks Allie@VitaTrain4Life for the recommendation.
32. The book you’re currently reading? The Smart Girl’s Guide To Going Vegetarian by fellow RD, Rachel Meltzer Warren.

Rachel Meltzer Warren, RD
33. Last show you watched? Veronica Mars, it’s my newest Amazon Prime addiction.
34. Last person you talked to? In person, Jay.  On the phone, Laurie.  I do a lot of virtual talking too though. 
35. The relationship between you and the person you last texted?  Jay, the boyfriend since college.  Laurie, friends since we were 5.
36. Favorite food?  Does challah count?  It is perfect but if I had to choose, I’d say good grilled shrimp or Indian food.
37. Place you want to visit?  Everywhere!  Greece would be top of the list though.
38. Last place you were? Travel-wise – Boston and NH for Reach The Beach.
39. Do you have a crush?  Hello?  See Simon Le Bon below.

Duran Duran, Simon Le Bon, Terminal 5, NYC

My photo of SLB from the 2nd row at the Duran Fan Show at Terminal 5 6/20/12

40. Last time you kissed someone?  This morning before Jay and Wild Boy went to school.
41. Last time you were insulted?  Last week with a backhanded compliment.
42. Favorite flavor of sweet?  Dark chocolate.
43. What instruments do you play?  None well unless you think “Tom Dooley” on the guitar is masterful.
44. Favorite piece of jewelry?  My diamond earrings from my first wedding anniversary, my Satya Lotus necklace,  the many pieces of jewelry made by Wild Boy or my FitBloggin’ necklace (now with a Ragnar charm).

Bam Ry, Fitbloggin'

A gift for myself

45. Last sport you played?  Yoga isn’t a sport, right?  Then a game of catch with Wild Boy.
46. Last song you sang? “Dirty Deeds” by AC/DC in the car.  Not a song you want people to hear you sing.
47. Favorite chat up line?  I’m not into picking up dates but I’m friendly enough and just introduce myself in situations where I don’t know anyone.
48. Have you ever used it?  Often.
49. Last time you hung out with anyone? Camping last weekend with friends.  7.5 is a great age.  Kids don’t have to be watched like hawks and adults can socialize for a little while.
50. Who should answer these questions next?  You and you and you.  (Can you see me pointing?)


What question do you normally ask people to determine whether you really like them or not? 


Disclosure:  There are Amazon Affiliate links (book mentions) within this post which means if you buy anything on through these links, it will generate a few pennies to add to my Duran Duran 2015 Tour Fund.  I thank you in advance.

Tunes For Tuesday – Breast Cancer Awareness & Women’s Month – Joan Jett

Welcome to Tunes For Tuesday – It’s Women in Music for Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October!

Music, Tunes For Tuesday

Image: Daisy



For National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I’m highlighting some of the great women in music.  While I’m well aware that men also can be diagnosed with breast cancer (according the American Cancer Society the risk of breast cancer for men is 1 in 1,000 vs 1 in 8 for women), I figured that giving the spotlight to women for the month wasn’t a bad idea.

Today’s featured artist is the bad ass rocker, Joan Jett.  She’s done a ton of popular songs like “I Love Rock n’ Roll”, “Crimson and Clover” and “Do You Want To Touch Me” but my favorite has to be “Bad Reputation”.  What girl didn’t want to have a tenth of Joan’s cool bad girl image (I did but was the furthest thing from cool bad girl)?  Friends, need a pump up song for your playlist, this one will also get you revved up for sure!



For more information about Breast Cancer Awareness Month, please see:

or go and read Wendy Nielsen’s 2014 Breast Cancer Series here.



Friday’s Featured Female – Marissa@BarefootinColorado

Welcome to Friday’s Featured Female!

Friday's Featured Female, #FFF


This weekly series features inspirational stories from admirable women.  IMHO, it’s always good to be reminded of how strength, determination, hard work, heart and ingenuity can impact the quality of one’s life and I’m proud that these women will allow me to share their stories here.


Today’s Friday’s Featured Female is Marissa@BarefootColorado.  Marissa was my Van 2 teammate (and my brief hotel roommate) for Pumped Up Kicks Media Team at Reach The Beach last month.  It’s rare to meet someone so young (she’s a recent college graduate) with such grounding.  Maybe it’s the Colorado lifestyle?   Marissa ran over 19 miles for RTB and smiled nearly the entire time she was doing it.  She told me she was nervous but she sure didn’t show it!  This brave girl is about to embark upon her first 50K in November and I’m certain she’s going to kill it!  Today Marissa is talking about a fitness endeavor that changed her life.  It’s an activity that scares the heck out of me but one that so many people find transformational.  Learn more about that workout and about Marissa right now!


Sooooo have you met Marissa?


I can honestly say that CrossFit has completely changed my life — for the better. I’ve always been active, but it wasn’t until I started CrossFit that I found something that mentally, physically and emotionally challenged me both inside and outside of the gym.


They say you never forget your first WOD (workout of the day). Mine was 3 rounds of 12 thrusters, 12 wall balls – for time. I don’t even remember my time, and I remember doing thrusters with only the bar. Regardless, I was toast at the end of it. I wanted to vomit. My legs and arms felt like jello and I honesty felt like I could never do it again.

… and then I came back the next day and signed up for a membership.


Throughout the year and a half that I’ve done CrossFit, I’ve grown so much as an athlete and as a person. I’ve become much more confident in myself, my abilities and my mental stamina.

It hasn’t been easy. But, nothing worthwhile in life comes on a silver platter. Nothing ever valuable is just handed to you.

CrossFit literally breaks me down, to build me back up.

A day not too long ago, I was having a rotten time. One thing led to another and the next thing I knew I was crying in the parking lot of my CrossFit gym — 20 minutes late to class.

I didn’t want to go. At all. But, I picked up my gym bag and headed through those double doors.

…..3.2.1… GO. I  picked up the bar and started the WOD. It wasn’t an easy one —Far from it actually. What WOD is though? Some day you feel stronger than others & today was not one of those days. I was struggling by the end of the first round and to be honest wasn’t sure how I could do 4 more.


I wanted to quit. I wanted to stop. I felt numb, I felt broken, I felt defeated. I felt weak.

The feeling was all too familiar.

But you know what?

I finished.

Just as I always do. Just as I always have.

The competition WOD last winter made me feel like I was letting my team down. I felt defeated.

14.4 made me feel inadequate. And may have been the first and only WOD I’ve actually cried in.

This WOD made me feel like I literally could not go any farther. I was weak.

But you know what all of those WODs have in common?  I finished them all.

CrossFit Open 14.2

No matter how weak, defeated, emotionally/physically/mentally beat down I was — I finished. It’s not until a few hours/days after that you really look back and think ‘wow, I didn’t give up.’ No matter how many times my mind is telling me to quit, I don’t. And I won’t.

CrossFit breaks me at my core. It makes me feel more raw, more helpless and more exposed than I have ever felt in my life. It doesn’t care if I had a bad day. Doesn’t care how I’m feeling. CrossFit is the great equalizer. Let’s be honest. It kicks everyone’s ass. But, after it’s done making me feel vulnerable and weak, it makes me feel strong, confident and more sure of myself than ever.

CrossFit breaks me down. And then it builds me up.

Handstand Pushups CrossFit Flex

If I can get through those WODS,  I can get through anything Because when it comes down to it, it’s not about barbells and burpees.

It’s about mental strength, a fighter’s heart and having the courage to know that you can do this — one rep… or one step at a time.

My advice to you is: Find something you love and stick to it. Even if it’s hard. There’s nothing more rewarding than knowing that you can do anything you put your mind to. And trust me, you CAN do anything.

Conquer Denver 4


 Thanks Melissa for sharing your space today! 

Let’s connect!

Instagram <— pretty pictures of mountains, self-timer running pics and my niece.


How do you feel about CrossFit?  Love it?  Hate it?  Scared of it?  Talk to me, people.