I should start by saying that I don’t love online shopping to begin with, and my recent experiences are not helping change my mind.

That virtual IKEA cart I mentioned?  Well, the items have all been purchased and are scheduled to arrive toward the middle of NEXT MONTH!  That’s like a century in Quarantine Years!  To further my frustration, the dresser I ordered to solve the riddle of storing the kids’ clothing arrived damaged and needs to be returned.  And, after seeing it in person, I can’t decide if I want it replaced or find a different one that fits within both the peculiar dimensions and our limited budget.

On top of everything else, I feel like I have hit a wall.  We keep doing the days, to quote an adorable child of an acquaintance, but I’m ready for a break.  There isn’t a mother on Earth who loves being with her family more than I and yet the first words I spoke to B yesterday morning were to tell him that I needed Roux to leave me alone for a few hours, which is the homeschool equivalent of calling in sick.

I’m sure it does not help that Operation Garage Organization is off to the kind of start that brings more chaos before it brings order.  Surely I can’t be the only one who makes a bigger mess while she’s cleaning up?  

It’s the middle of the week and items are getting added to the list more quickly than they are being eliminated.  But! I got a new step stool and literally cannot believe I have lived all of these years at my height without one!  It’s revolutionary.  

You better watch it, Wednesday.  Mama’s in a mood. 


Ten years ago today, I was a single mother living in Santa Monica.  My kids were six and three – they felt so grown to me at the time, but of course were impossibly young – and we did not own a car.  I worked at and Emet attended a Waldorf charter school and Jade was in preschool at a local early childhood center.  It was a Wednesday, which were early dismissal days.  Ordinarily, I would round up the kids and we’d ride our bikes to the park or the beach and we almost always got frozen yogurt on the way home.  On this particular Wednesday, however, we headed to the home of a friend who’d agreed to watch my kids for a few hours while borrowed his car and drove myself to a meeting.

A few weeks earlier, I had spent the weekend at Coachella.  I met a variety of interesting people as is the nature of a large music festival in the California desert, one of whom was a tech entrepreneur who was an acquaintance of my father.  (Everyone is an acquaintance of my father.)  We had a random conversation in between sets from the XX and Muse (oh, 2010!), and I told him I didn’t have a car or a computer and fancied myself a bit of luddite.  I’m pretty sure I was barefoot at the time.

For whatever reason, the impression I made stuck and sometime in the middle of the next week, I received a phone call.

“Lynzie, I got your number from your father.  You’re very interesting, and I’d like you to come work for me and my start-up.”

It was fortuitous in that I was needing to look for summer employment as I was paid hourly and would therefore not have income during the months that school was on break, so I agreed to a meeting the following Wednesday.

I don’t remember feeling nervous, but I do remember putting on a strappy pair of heeled shoes which was not something I would ordinarily do.  I also put on lip gloss which is my version of a full face of make up.  I think I wanted to look polished and professional and not like an urban cyclist slash Waldorf kindergarten teacher.

When I arrived to the Hollywood Hills mansion where the meeting was to take place, I was greeted at the door by a person I had yet to meet, but who had clearly been expecting me.  He introduced himself and told me the person I had come to see was waiting for me on the second floor and that he’d lead me in the right direction

We passed through the foyer and through the first living room, where two guys with computers were both sitting on the floor.  The person leading me informed me of their names without really formally introducing me, and I smiled politely as I continued to the stairwell in the corner of the room.

The meeting was quick and relatively informal; I agreed to start the following Monday and my duties would include general office tasks as well as a bit of copy writing.  We shook hands, and I started to make my way back toward the door, relieved that the job search was over and thrilled that I’d actually be earning a decent amount of money doing work that sounded kind of fun.

As I moved through that first living room, one of the guys looked up at me and waved as I passed.  I remember being told his name was Babe and that he lived in North Carolina, and I remember immediately thinking that I absolutely wanted to know more, and I definitely attributed that wave to what I was sure to be his cordial southern charm.

It’s hard to believe an entire decade has passed since that afternoon and it’s even more mind boggling to think of that simple encounter as being the beginning of what has become a defining relationship in my life.  

A nostalgic gal like me can’t help but reminisce about the years we have been together and it seems more than appropriate to take a look back at some of the highlights.  Over the next few months leading up to our anniversary, which we’ll officially celebrate on 8/20, I plan on sharing bits of our journey. 

Ours is a great love story, one we are lucky enough to still be writing together.


Even though I woke up a full hour later than I had intended, I managed to get myself out the door for a run before anyone else was awake.

Gosh, I love this city.  When we stumbled into living in this neighborhood almost seven years ago, we had no idea that it happened to be the very best part of town.  Moving away was so challenging for me, and I was determined to make it back here one way or another.  Finding our current apartment was an absolute miracle, and even though the living quarters are petite, I’m pretty sure it’s my favorite residence ever.

I love it even more than I loved Eagle Street, which is saying quite a bit.

Anyway, one of the key elements that makes this neck of the woods ideal is that the terrain immediately available outside my front door could not be better for a runner like me.  This morning, I logged over three miles, my longest run in years.  And it felt good.

I thought about my Garage Project all night, and woke up with the framework for how I want to approach the next few weeks.  By far, the biggest element for me to tackle is working through all of the many boxes that have accumulated over the course of our numerous moves.  Most of these boxes have remained sealed since first being packed, so opening them is kind of like releasing a time capsule.

I brought the first batch up just before lunch, and have unearthed some absolute treasures including a photo of Emet at five months old that had me laughing so hard my sides ached, and the simple square piece of paper with B’s handwritten wedding vows to me.  That particular gem was quite a well-timed find, as we’re preparing to celebrate an impressive milestone in our household.

My plan is to consolidate the contents of these random boxes, discarding what I don’t need and storing the rest in an organized and coherent way.  The vast majority of what I “own” are things my kids have made or given to me which makes eliminating the clutter unbearably difficult.  Every last scrap sparks joy, Marie Kondo!  I’m hoping to channel my newfound obsession with bookmaking into bankable currency as far as sorting this kind of stuff is concerned.  I am asking myself two questions: Why am I keeping this?  Can it be used?  So far, this has helped.  I’m about halfway through today’s selection and am motivated to keep going, which is good news.

Honestly, if you would have told me seven weeks ago that I’d be waking up early to run three miles before organizing my garage, I’d have politely replied that clearly you’d mistaken me for someone else. 

Oh, quarantine.  What other tricks have you got up your sleeve?


Three months from today, I’ll celebrate another trip around the sun.  The older I get, the more important it has become for me personally to not just age, but to grow.  To be able to look back and see where I was, and where I am, and hopefully identify how I have evolved during the span of a year.

I have always been a planner, a list maker, a goal setter.  Unfortunately, I’ve not ever been very good at any of these skills.  And yes, I’ve come to think of them as skills – techniques that can be learned, refined, and, if properly implemented, lead to an increase in productivity and success.

Yes, I have set goals and achieved them, made plans that have gone off without a hitch, kept lists that have helped keep me on track, but all of these have been short-term.  I have never been consistent in setting or maintaining long term plans, lists, or goals.  That isn’t to say that I haven’t accomplished things I’m proud of, but I am acknowledging that I’m not quite where I’d like to be.

One of the things I set out to do this year was to get as organized as possible, on paper and otherwise.  I’ve done a somewhat decent job of this, especially recently.  But today, I am doubling down:  I am determined to have sorted through every single thing I own by the time I celebrate my next birthday.  

This isn’t necessarily what some would consider a long term goal.  I mean, it’s only three months!  For me, though, this is less about the length of time than it is having one huge goal and tackling it step by step, over a period of time.  It’s going to take sustained effort to make this happen.  And if I pull it off, it will be one of the best presents I could ever give myself.



It shouldn’t have come as a surprise that our school will continue distance learning for the duration of this academic year, and yet as I read the official announcement, it was with a tinge of sadness.  As much as I’ve gotten used to this new rhythm, I am looking forward to when the kids and I can return to our home away from home.

We have been part of our school community for seven years, longer than I’ve remained at any one place in all my life.  I have a lot more to say about what WSSD means to me, but I will save it for anther time.  In a nutshell: we have all grown up there, in so many different ways.  We are all eager to get back.  However, even though we aren’t together on campus, there is still a strong sense of unity and for than I am grateful.  I am also very proud of how quickly we teachers were able to adapt to a digital platform (alas, some of us more quickly than others).

My own teenagers have adjusted quite well to learning online, even if it means more screen time than either have had previously.  Nevertheless, their sprits are high and they are both keeping on top of their school work without too much direction needed from me.

My little one, though.  He’s happy enough to be home, and we do a really good job of maintaining a healthy home rhythm.  But, gosh, he misses school more than any of us.  It probably doesn’t help that I miss it for him, knowing that these are his final months of Early Childhood.  Come next fall, he’ll join his big sister (and me!) in the grades – she in Grade Eight, he in Grade One, and I, Handwork teacher to them both.  While I am certain he will have a marvelous time, I can’t help but acknowledge the tender spot in my heart for his days in the Lilac Kindergarten.

Because he’s in Early Childhood and because Waldorf education strongly adheres to the belief is counterintuitive to healthy incarnation, he does not have the same access to his teachers and classmates as do his siblings.

I’m going to do my best to imbue as much magic and whimsy into our days as possible.  Choosing to reorganize his toys has already made a positive impact on his imaginative play.  I decided to add a few special pieces to our Grimms collection, as well as a hardbound copy of my favorite children’s story series for us to read together over the next few months.  We will continue with our weekly activities: painting, baking, cooking, cleaning, crafting.  And sunshine!  Now that the weather has changed, we are sure to get out for a bit of fresh air and Vitamin D each day. 

He has also surrendered to the fact that, even though he does not prefer it, we have nap time each day. 

(It is mama’s favorite hour.)

Ah, homeschool*.  You really aren’t so bad. 

*Lately, I’ve been getting the most intense flashbacks to homeschooling Emet and Jade when they were little and we lived in a small apartment in an urban neighborhood in West LA.  In fact, that was when I first started “blogging”.  Which could explain why I’m suddenly back here and full of stories to tell?


If quarantine has taught me anything, it’s about the importance of good habits.

If built properly, these good habits provide a stable sense of foundation.  They provide structure, balance, rhythm, all important things.  But!  Like any muscle, when not stretched, they can become tight and rigid.  Yes, flexibility is key.  With muscles, and with habits.

I had a strong habit life coming into quarantine, both in my personal and professional life.  However, these personal habits were largely built upon external factors like going to the gym, going to dance class, and marketing often (which is another way of saying “not keeping too much food on hand”); my professional habits were largely tied to workspace and productivity.

Very little of this was easy for me to translate into quarantine.  I have been somewhat vocal and transparent about how challenging I have found this transition to be, which is why I want to be equally as vocal and transparent about things that have helped me find my way.

By far and away, the thing that has saved me the most has been working with my hands.  This practice always does wonders for me, but it is not always easy for me to find motivation.  I think it was during the second week of quarantine that I picked up a long-neglected sweater project.  And then, on the last Sunday of March which was exactly two weeks into quarantine, I started a quilt project.  I will forever remember the latter as a symbol of it all starting to come together.

The work of my hands quickly spilled over into the kitchen.  Actually, I think the work of my hands might have started in the kitchen by way of stress baking.  But that is definitely not the kind of habit I want to foster, so.  The kitchen work I’m talking about is twofold, but could perhaps be summed up in a single word: organization.  The physical space is organized, the pantry is organized, and our meals are (somewhat) organized.  Our shopping has become rhythmic and cyclical.  I’ve even tackled some things I’ve had the intention of doing but never got around to like start my own starter, make cleaning solutions out of citrus peels, and other such kitchen witchery.  I’m enjoying my time in the kitchen more than ever, I think.  For a long time, the kitchen was my happy place and it’s been years since I’ve felt that way.  It’s nice to find joy in something that is necessary.

And from the kitchen came the rest of the house, which I’ve discussed at length already.  All the difference in the world has come from making and keeping a tidy home.  It might have taken a global pandemic for this to become my reality, but there you have it.  Seven straight hours cleaning my bedroom yesterday resulted in the most functional and appealing home office I have ever had.  I’ve got an IKEA shopping cart currently loaded with a few things to help me finish off the space once and for all.  I’m reluctant to purchase, though, because I’m annoyed by the fact that in-store pick-up is not currently an option (I’m annoyed that going to the store is not an option), but I don’t want to lose steam and I do want to delare the room done.  So, if I were a better, I’d put my money on a delivery being scheduled shortly.

Working through and clearing my physical space most definitely was the outer expression of me working through and clearing my mental space.  I know this because much like the “craft pile” that is now a neat and orderly collection of supplies and projects, where there once lived a jumbled mishmash of random thoughts bound together with anxiety is now home to clarity and motivation. 

Motivation, even, to find new and creative ways to move by body.  Not being able to visit the gym or the dance studio dramatically impaired what had become my most important outlet.  Sweating, over the last year, has been my saving grace.  I knew it was essential for me to replace those activities with something, but I was at a loss as to what to do.  I’ve tried walking the public stairs in my neighborhood, I’ve tried virtual dance classes, virtual fitness classes, and after much reluctance, I finally pulled out my running shoes and headed out the door.  I haven’t quite hit my stride yet (a run pun!), but the fact that I’m trying is evidence of my attempt at adaptability.  Without a doubt, the second the gym reopens for business, I will be one of the first ones there.

Obviously moving from teaching in a classroom setting to teaching virtually is a huge shift and it’s taken me – someone who is not the most technically savvy – a little while to adjust.  The learning curve has been steep.  There have been tears and sleepless nights.  But, there have also been breakthroughs and progress.  By the start of next week, I should have everything up and running and that is very good news.

After six weeks, I can finally say that I’ve got a handle on this quarantine life.  It took a lot of work to arrive here and after writing this, I realize that it would be insincere of me to not mention that a major contributing factor in mustering a positive shift in the very beginning came in the form of the Three Things method advocated by Elise Blaha Cripe, who is easily the most inspiring person on the internet in my very humble opinion.  Last fall, she published a book – Big Dreams, Daily Joys – which describes this practice in a little more detail but in a nutshell: identify three things you CAN do, and do them.  At first, my list included things like “take a shower” and “make my bed” but those very quickly became things like “run two miles” and “reorganize my workspace.”  In this time when practically everything is out of my control, focusing on what I can control has been essential to establishing and maintaining productivity.

I’m not sure how much longer this season will last, and it is indeed a season.  Like all seasons, it will end and another one will follow.  Someday, when my grandchildren ask me what it was like during Coronavirus Quarantine, I hope sit them down and tell them how, during a time of great uncertainty, I learned how not only to survive, but to thrive.



As I was cleaning my room over the weekend, I gathered into a single location all the random ephemera I’ve compulsively collected with the intention of cataloging it into some kind of scrap book, but have never actually done so.  Little bits of interesting paper, ticket stubs, programs, quotes from fliers, art my kids have made, things of that sort that for whatever reason catch my eye or feel important to me.

This habit of collecting began in earnest during my pregnancy with Emet, though I have always been a bit of a sentimental hoarder.  I have a shocking number of plastic bins filled with what some my consider random clutter, or even rubbish, but that are absolutely precious to me.  I also have an impressive amount of paper crafting supplies, purchased over the years to help me transform the contents of the bins into….something else?  Trouble is, I’ve never really gotten past the collecting part, and I think it’s because I’ve not really had a clear vision of what I wanted that something else to be.  Well, that, and the Perfectionism that frequently prevents me from taking action. 

One of the things I see in my students all of the time is the fear of making a mistake.  I am teaching them a brand new skill, sometimes one they’ve never even heard of, and frequently they are unable to try without panicking.  I tell them over and over that it takes a lot of practice in order to get good at something, and that “practice” is just another way of saying “repeating.”  You repeat something, you do it over and over again, in order to improve.  The key words, of course, are: DO SOMETHING.

Nike really hit the nail on the head with Just Do It.  Truly, just do it.  I hear myself say, “Don’t be afraid to make a mistake! We can always fix it!” to my students multiple times a week.  And yet, I have the hardest time taking my own good advice.  If you never start, how can you ever expect to get any better?

A big goal of mine this year is to go through every single box and bin in my possession.  At the end of January, we finally emptied our storage unit, so everything we own lives at the same address.  And since our plan is to stay here through at least the end of next school year, I went in to this calendar year determined to tackle the biggest of projects.  

Naturally, I haven’t had a clue where to start.

A few weeks ago, one of the daily tasks I began giving myself was to tend to home projects.  Little by little, things have started to take shape – the linen closet, the kitchen, the  toys.  

It was only a matter of time before my attention would land in my bedroom, where there is nothing left for me to do but begin to address all the things I’ve been avoiding.  Over the weekend, I tackled the bulk of the clutter, leaving just the bits that have yet to find a formal place to land.  Those were corralled into a little basket, tucked into my workspace.

And there was just something about that basket that sort of did it for me.

A few short clicks later, my curbside pick-up order had been placed and I was on my way to Michael’s and back home again, armored with glue sticks, card stock, adhesive tape, and a paper cutter.  Yes, many of those things live in my garage but one thing I know about my creative process is that when inspiration strikes, it is now or never.

The fact that my highly anticipated new planner happened to arrive at our mailbox before I even had time to unpack my new tools was even more fan to my flames.  Don’t stop me now, Mr. Fahrenheit!

I dove in as quickly and as deeply as I could and managed to get the framework for half a dozen pages completed of what will become my very first handmade scrap book.  I’m keeping the format loose, with no plans other than to fill it up.  It will be made of mostly things I already own or have collected, enhanced by the few things I mentioned above.  If all goes accordingly, this will become the first of many little bound treasures.

It might not seem like much, punching a few holes and glueing some things together. But for me, it is extremely significant.  Like something bubbling to the surface after a long percolation, I plan to ride this wave of inspiration as far as it’ll carry me.




I spent the day in a bit of a cleaning frenzy yesterday, and I was so focused that after I finished cleaning my bedroom, I thought for sure it was nearly 1 PM but it was just barely past 10:30 AM!  Now that I’m thinking about it, the frenzy sort of quietly began around Thursday afternoon when I decided that the toys Roux currently has are not at all what he should be playing with now that he’s home all the time and no longer spending most of his waking  hours surrounded by the beauty that is inherent in a Waldorf Early Childhood classroom.

Our living space is tiny.  I’d say “with a capital T” but there isn’t room around here for letters of that size.  There is a lot more to tell about this place, and one day I’ll get around to that, but for now my point is that we are going to be living here for at least another year and I have decided to really make an effort to customize every square inch we do have with the intention of creating the coziest, most functional environment possible.  I try not to dwell too much on the fact that this very well could be the last place I get to share with Emet before he heads off to college and beyond.  But I do let that idea inspire my quest to imbue as much as I can into each nook and cranny.

The need for functionality was really amplified by quarantine now that we are all mostly here, as was the need for beauty.  Which brings me back to the toys.

I’m sorry, but as much fun as they are, legos are just not beautiful.  Nor are they the most nourishing toys for a child of six to be playing with.  But for whatever reason, when we move here in October, those were the toys we brought into the apartment and the rest have been stored in the garage.  I spent a few days digging around and pulled out as many of our wooden treasures as I could find.  Turns out, we have quite a few.  I cleared off the one shelf we are currently using as storage, sorted through what we had inside and kept only one bin of legos.  The rest of the family thought I was crazy, so certain they were that the little one would pitch a fit, having become quite attached to tinkering with those little plastic pieces.  But it’s been about four days since the transition began and he’s not said a single word about it.  That speaks volumes to me about the potency of toys that inspire play instead of those that cast limitations.

The other two things that have made a big impact in our small space have been mounting a peg board in our kitchen from which now hang our pots and pans.  Creative storage solution that is also visually appealing?  Check plus!  And lastly, forever a work in progress but currently in a good situation, is my enormous stockpile of crafting supplies that have been sorted, stored, and are ready to be put to work.

To top it all off, I spent a chunk of my day tending to the laundry and not only is it all clean, but it is all folded AND put away properly which is a huge achievement for me!

Kicking off the week with a tidy home is pretty much the best thing.  Six weeks into quarantine and feeling like there might even be the slightest pep in my step is such a blessing.  Hoping for a productive week.  I’ve got a quilt top and a sleeve to finish, plus videos to film, tutorials to type, and at least six workouts to try and break a good sweat.  Maybe I’ll manage close out the week with an even tidier home?  Anything is possible when Mondays are this good.


Today we’ll complete our thirtieth day of quarantine.  It’s Easter Sunday.  There is a loaf of bread in the oven, tomato sauce simmering on the stove, meatballs curing in the fridge, and a pie that was meant to be tonight’s featured dessert but of which only a few slices remain.  I’ve got the second sleeve started on a sweater, a quilt top that’s about a third of the way pieced together, a special blanket being knit in squares day by day, and the pattern for a dress ready to be cut.  The sourdough starter I decided to try and make three days ago bubbles quietly on the floor of my closet, while I sit on my bed with the windows open listening to the birds and the sounds of Roux playing with his dad in the small courtyard behind our apartment.

Let’s back it up just a bit, shall we?

Two Sundays ago, it occurred to me slightly out of nowhere that I maybe I could scrounge up enough scrap fabric in my stash to make this quilt.  Everything shifted for the better in that moment, and how grateful I am because the two weeks before that stroke of inspiration were spent in a silent spiral of all my worst habits – sugar, scrolling, and neglecting myself altogether.  Those days felt a little like how Sylvia Plath describes them in The Bell Jar – blank and stopped.

I have never ever been particularly swift in adjusting to new rhythms, and this has been no exception.  How does one find rhythm when there is nothing to do and every day is the same?

For me, that has meant returning to the most essential work of all – tending to the hearth of a home.  Of course, I did not know that was what I was doing as I began cutting the fabric into squares, but working on the quilt was the first step in finding my way to a better place.

The day after I began the quilt, our school’s remote learning program launched and that immediately brought a little bit of positive energy to everyone.  The next day, I began using my planner again, which I hadn’t had the heart to even open since driving home from school the Friday we officially closed.  Crossing things off a list, even little things like “nap” and “knit”, gave me another huge boost and by the following Monday, I found myself in a little bit of a rhythm.  The school days move smoothly and there is a palpable contrast to our work days and our weekends.

I accomplish things every day.  One of the biggest projects that has been hanging over my head since moving into this apartment has been solving the riddle of the kitchen.  We’re just a few steps away from having what Jade has proclaimed to be the most functional space yet which is quite thrilling given it’s also the tiniest kitchen I’ve had since living in New York City.  Have I mentioned how much this place reminds me of New York?  Anyway, my point is that the fog in my brain is lifting and now I can assess the damage and form a plan.

Obviously, the first thing I’m going to do is challenge myself to get back into shape as quickly as I fell out of shape.  This will be a particularly fun challenge because all of my usual methods of physical movement are not currently available to me – hence the falling out of shape – so I’m taking the opportunity to explore things I wouldn’t normally do like virtual fitness apps.  I’m also going to do my best to focus on being nourished by food as opposed to being comforted, which is an extremely important distinction for me.  Perhaps most importantly, I am going to make it a point to care for myself with grace and intention on a daily basis, things like washing my face, putting oil on after I shower, dry brushing before I take a bath, getting dressed with purpose.

Tomorrow we’ll begin our fifth week of quarantine, our third week of distance learning, and the first week that I’ll be hosting my Handwork classes online.  That last bit will be something new that will need to find its way into what is becoming our new normal – and oh, how I’ve missed my students! – but I’m aware of how this is yet another shift to which I will need to adjust.  I’m hoping that I’m prepared, that the momentum I’ve found in the projects I’ve created for myself and the balance I’m just beginning to maintain as a result will be enough to sustain me.  Best case, I’m in an even better place thirty days from now, quarantine or not.

The quilt is not perfect by any means, but it already priceless to me and it hasn’t even been bound.  It’s mostly made of humble muslin cloth, embellished with bits of brightly colored cotton in the sunset shades of poppy flowers – oranges, pinks, yellows, reds.  Though I have spent most of my life making things with my hands, never before has the process brought me back to myself the way making this quilt has.

All day long I have thought about resurrection, reincarnation, renaissance.  The cycle of building and breaking and building again, this has long been a theme for me.  As I was taking yardage and methodically cutting it into smaller pieces to then sew together into one piece approximately the same size as one of larger pieces I began with, it was not lost on me that while it would certainly be easier to have a single piece of large fabric and call it a day, one that has been crafted with care over time, no matter how flawed, is infinitely more beautiful.