Saturday, September 21, 2013

Musings from my desk...part 1

                                   

"In the end, we only regret the chances we didn't take, relationships we were too afraid to have and the decisions we waited too long to make" -Anonymous


Hello my dears! 
Not going to make this one long. I was just thinking about time and how we really have so little of it.  I'm not talking about time management of the day and following schedules. I'm speaking of life itself... the life you live. 

When I was pregnant with my son, I refused to watch the news, scary or sad movies, read the paper or anything else I felt that would negatively effect the child growing in my womb through my subconscious. Some may say that's a little overboard, but I knew that everything I did, ate, saw or thought was effecting my baby. From that day and many days that followed, I made sure that everyday I was alive, I lived it with purpose, with joy, laughter and love surrounding me. Even now, almost four years later, I'm not a big news watcher. Sometimes I feel so jaded by the things I often see or hear about. Shootings more then I can count here in America, war and rumors of war, dishonesty of governments all over the world and human suffering all around. Yet, I try to make these deterrents my motivation to live my best life...maybe because I know that at any moment, it could all be taken away from me. So many people ask me how I could just get up one day and move to Japan. A place where I knew no one, did not speak, read or write the language and had little knowledge of, other then things I had researched or stereotypes that had been presented to me. I went with no fear and no expectations, except that I wanted to experience life. And that journey changed my life for the better. 

So my friends, I leave you with this. Live everyday like it is your last. Make it memorable in the little things as well as the big ones. So many of us leave the party too soon. For those of us blessed to stay til the end, make it a time that no one will forget.

Love,
Malinda xoxo

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Goodbye Baby Boy, Hello Little Man....


Hello there! Hope everyone is getting into the swing of the coming autumn season. The weather is getting cooler, Starbucks is selling Pumpkin Spiced Lattes again (praise the LORD!) and its all about fashion week in major cities across the country. For me, its the anticipation of knowing that this is the last season before my little winter baby turns another year.

I remember dreaming of my son when I was pregnant with him. I had always prayed for children and when my husband and I conceived Masaya, I can truly say that my deepest wish had come true. I imagined his smile, the shape of his face, would he have Kenji's eyes or mine. And once he was born, he was even more magnificent then I had thought. The best advice I received from all the mothers I knew was "enjoy every moment, because it will be gone before you know it". And they were right. I think I took a picture of him almost every day that first year. And it was a year of so many firsts. First time mother and father, first born son, first laugh, first fever, first steps and on and on they went. These emotional moments, branded into my mind. Memories, that I pray I will be able to keep until my last breath. Fast forward a few years later. There are still many firsts, first day of pre-school, first real bicycle, complete with training wheels. And there will be more firsts to come, but something is different now. I no longer have a baby and can not call him a toddler either. I have a little boy, a man child who becomes more and more independent as the days go by. Slowly needing me less and relying on his own instincts more. Part of me longs for my sweet baby. The coos and the wordless communication that only he and I shared. Our secret world. But...watching my son grow, advance, achieve and progress fills my heart and soul like nothing in this world. Even now, I have tears in my eyes just thinking of how proud I am of this child that I helped to create. My little man, my boy. Light of my life and Kenji and my love, manifested in flesh.

I know I wax poetic about my wee one. Don't get me wrong, some days I want to ring his little neck. But everyday, I thank God that I was honored to be his mother, his teacher of life lessons and bricklayer of his foundation. I know that my son will one day leave my house to create a home for himself and to make his way in this world. I am just grateful that today is not that day...not yet for my little man. Enjoy everyday with your children my friends...it truly is a blessing.

Love Always,
Malinda xoxo

Monday, September 9, 2013

A Funny Thing Happened to Me in Allentown...

                          

Hello dear friends. It feels like ages since I wrote and I am so sorry for the long break, but a sista needed some quality time to herself. I'm glad to say that I got that time and I am so ready to bring you some exciting pieces. So here we go!

I imagine that there are events like this through out the USA, but every first Friday of the month here in Buffalo, NY, many galleries have new openings, exhibits and they are all free. I adore First Fridays here. Not only do I get to see world renown art at Albright Knox Art Gallery and local artists at many of the smaller and locally owned galleries, but I get to meet new people, have stimulating conversations and did I mention the free wine? Last week was one of those nights, especially because it was the grand unavailing of the Allen St. Street Artist Collective, sponsored by Mark Goldman, the owner of Allen Street Hardware Cafe. This was an event I had been looking forward to for some time and did not want to miss it. So my little Masaya and I headed to Allentown for a night of mother and son creative festivities. Its so important to me and Kenji that we expose our son not only to the arts, but that he also support art, in all its different forms and art in his community. We pride ourselves on Masaya being well rounded and bringing him to events like this monthly helps us reach this goal.

So off went me and Masaya, he decked out in his best urban baby chic and me in my skinny jeans. As we were coming up to the main event I saw a few of the murals that were on display. Eager to capture the moment, I snapped a few shots while Masaya waited patiently for me. And then, I heard her. Just some random woman, watching me and Masaya with a look of disgust on her face. She  said "Why would she bring her kid here?" loudly to her friend, who also shared her disapproval. Now, for those of you who don't live here in WNY, Allentown is on the more...bohemian side of the city, full of colorful characters and places to drink and get crazy. But we live in the city and because of this, my child is exposed to everything, the sweet and the bitter sides of urban living, life really. However, this woman's reaction really puzzled me. My child was not in any danger. The monthly event is very family friendly as well as the neighborhood itself. Yet, by her tone, you would have thought my son was at the corner playing with knives and being groomed by pimps. So being the confident woman that I am, I finished taking my photos, grabbed Masaya's hand and turned to this very judgmental woman and said:

"I bring my son here almost every month because this city is his home and we support our home. And more importantly, I don't want my child to be as closed minded and ignorant as you. He's only three and he is already more cultured and refine then you will ever be. Have a good night."

And with that, me and Masaya turned on our heels while she was cussing me out in the background, but I was too busy glowing in my little speech to even notice her. We had a blast the rest of the night, met some amazing artists, saw some great pieces and even ran into a few friends. Not to mention, I ended up getting the best validation from one of the gallery owners who said to me "I see you and your son around often. Thank you for exposing your kid to art. You're a great parent and we need a lot more  like you." I was so touched, but also proud of my child as well.

Yes, we run into those folks who want to judge us, tell us that were doing it  wrong and that their way is better. But they are few and far between. The ones who truly watch us, observe us and encourage us, well, there are far too many to count.

Here's to art and here's to teaching our young ones all about it!

Love Malinda xoxo

For more information on First Fridays here in Buffalo, NY, Allen St. Hardware Cafe and ASSA Collective please visit the following links:

http://www.firstfridaysallentown.com/events/firstfriday/
http://www.albrightknox.org/education/m-t-first-fridays/
http://allenstreethardware.com
https://www.facebook.com/assacollective
http://buffalorising.com/2013/09/artists-paint-the-town-red-and-then-some/