Hi lovely bloggies, I hope your Friday is going well!
I’ve had a pretty emotional day, I’m not going to lie. I am so honored that so many of you have taken the time to write me and tell me about how you are inspired by my strength, but I need you all to know I am a real person too! I break down ALL THE TIME because of what happened; I miss my brother every second of every day and it still is very real, raw and hard. Just know that I’m not perfect and there’s definitely a lot of tears that are not displayed on the blog. I’m trying with every bit of strength I have to keep pushing forward and living my life because I know that that honors my brother and he doesn’t want me to be sad.
Anyways! I just felt like I had to write that because of things that happened today here at home. On a positive note, Ryan tried his first Green Monster!!!!!!
awwwww he’s so cute 🙂
Ryan’s smoothie consisted of orange juice, water, three fresh strawberries, wheat germ, strawberry protein power, a frozen banana, ice and spinach! He was SO nervous about it and told me that if it sucked I would have to make him a brand new smoothie. I felt so confident that he wouldn’t be able to taste the spinach at all so I said I would. The verdict? HE LOVED IT! He really did! I was so proud of him for eating basically a whole salad before 8:00 in the morning because, honestly, sometimes its hard to get any greens whatsoever in this boy during the day! He’s not a veggie fan like me 😉
After I got to witness Ryan drinking down his greens, I met both my parents at the gym for “Ultimate Spin”! And guess what—it was my mom’s first ever spinning class!!! My dad and I knew it would be good for her to get out of the house and be active and she enjoyed it….I think! This class combined 40 minutes of high intensity cyclig with 15 minutes on the mat doing push-ups and crunches. I think we did about 50 push-ups today and then spent the rest of the time doing every different kind of crunch possible. My chest and abs are going to definitely be hurting tomorrow!
After working out, I did my favorite thing of taking a nice long hot steam and showering at the gym. Its such a simple thing but just taking care of myself in that way feels so amazing right now. Now I can see why my brother never actually worked out at the gym…..he would just go and sit in the steam room! 😉 While I was putting my make-up on and getting ready, I snacked on some grapes
And then, since I spent so much time dilly-daddling in the lady’s locker room I almost was late for my early lunch with Sarah! We met at one of my favorite spots, The Village Health Market, and I got a roasted vegetable and hummus sandwich on Ezekiel bread with a kombucha to drink!
The sandwich was delicious and of course the kombucha was divine. I haven’t had one in weeks!
I talked to my mom for awhile then came home to actually get some work done. I think I’m pretty bad at this “working from home” thing because I need more of a regimented schedule or else I just frolic over to Anthropogie…to the gym….to the store…….No, Jenna! Work now! 😉
I have 2.5 hours now to crank out some articles and get caught up on emails and blog stuff before meeting Lanie for a cocktail across the street. We are just meeting at 5:00 after she gets off work from Anthropologie to have a cosmo….just because. The restaurant we are going to is TOTAL swankity-swank, and the “martini bar” is incredibly modern and trendy—they have about three pages of different martinis and cosmos to choose from! All I need is one, trust me! I will report back with pictures later 🙂
I leave you with photos of an elephant that my brother made in his AP ceramics class that now is mine. 🙂 I don’t know why I love this thing so much but I do! I’m putting this up here because I had a couple requests from readers to see some of John’s work since he was so incredibly talented (I never knew)!
runeatrepeatMay 22, 2009 at 12:53 pm
Wow! That elephant is so good! It looks completely professional. Keep the pics of John’s work coming 🙂
mhMay 22, 2009 at 1:04 pm
your brother was an amazing artist! What a precious gift you now have to look at everyday! stay strong my friend
meganMay 22, 2009 at 1:04 pm
your brother was so talented – the elephant is amazing! and way to go with getting ryan to drink a green monster! I put spinach in my husband’s smoothie last weekend and he was scared too, but he said he couldn’t even taste it!
CarolineMay 22, 2009 at 1:09 pm
Of course you adored it, because John made it and it’s worthy enough of being sold… AND (I’d like to think) because you still have some of that Tide Pride in ya! Love it. ROLL DAMN TIDE 🙂
Courtney (The Hungry Yogini)May 22, 2009 at 1:11 pm
Aww Jenna! I am sure it is so hard. I’m proud of you for really saying what you feel, although I’m sure it just skims the surface. This is your space and you can share or not share whatever you want. We are all just here with love and support!
I’m glad you had a great spin class. Lunch looks YUMS. And…is it BT you are going to for a drink? Oohhh la la. Fancy! Enjoy your cocktail!!
AmyMay 22, 2009 at 1:14 pm
Jenna, that elephant is amazing. I can see why you love it so much. Have fun getting a a martini tonight!
greenbeanMay 22, 2009 at 1:14 pm
hang in there girlie. be as open and free as you feel. we’re all hear for you.
EmilyMay 22, 2009 at 1:30 pm
Wow that elephant looks great! John must have been one very talented guy! It’s cool that you have pieces like that to remember him by!
That sammie looks awesome! 😀
Christina MINDFUL LIVINGMay 22, 2009 at 1:32 pm
hey jenna! (1) the sandwhich looks incredible (2) that elephant is absolutely amazing- i could only imagine what my attempt at doing that would look like! – probably more like a blob than anything that resembles an elephant and (3) I am happy to see that you are sharing your feelings with us on the blog- stay strong, jenna! you are an amazing person
SimoneMay 22, 2009 at 1:35 pm
Just like Ryan, I tried my first green monster today and boy was it ever good! Ive been wanting to try one forever but never had a blender to make one with. Well this week I moved to my own apartment (YAY!) and as a house warming present my friend got me a blender (double YAY!!). Anyways, I went to Whole Foods this morning and got all the ingredients and after yoga this afternoon I had my first green monster and loved it. You really can’t taste the spinach at all. After looking at multiple GM recipes from various blogs I decided to on the following:
-big handful of spinach
-1/2 c. frozen mango (was out of ice, thank god I had something to use as a substitute in my freezer)
-1 tsp. raw honey
-1 c. unsweetened almond milk
I could eat this, correction drink this, with every meal! Who needs soda, snapple, etc. when you have this!!
I am glad to hear that you were able to have artwork to remember your brother by. Some people don’t understand why such a particular piece is so meaningful, but like you, my Grandmother who recently passed away and she left me her painting of a red flower (she was a phenomenal painter, reminiscent of Monet). Anyways, while everyone just thought it was a painting, I knew it was more because it encapsulated everything my Grandmother was: beautiful, unique, and bold! Put that elephant in a special place and whenever you feel lonely or at a loss just look at the elephant sculpture. Touch it, talk to it; your brother is always with you!
DanielleMay 22, 2009 at 1:44 pm
John was SO talented, the elephant is incredible! An elephant with its trunk up is good luck; think of the sculpture as John bringing you good luck, love and happiness all day!
SarahMay 22, 2009 at 2:05 pm
I can’t believe you got him to drink a green monster, that is incredible! I have to first attempt to get my husband to drink a fruit smoothie before I start sneaking veggies in there, he doesn’t like them like me either! Have a good weekend.
SarahMay 22, 2009 at 2:05 pm
awww, that elephant kinda looks like Horton! So cute!
Shannon (The Daily Balance)May 22, 2009 at 2:07 pm
That elephant is amazing! Just look at the detail on the ears!
LeeMay 22, 2009 at 2:07 pm
I’ve been a blog lurker for a while now. I was so sorry to read about your brother, but I really didn’t know what I could write in a comment that could possibly help. But after reading the beginning of your blog today, I just had to respond. You are strong, Jenna. Whether you’re standing tall and doing your best to move on, sharing your experiences on the blog, or curled up in a ball and crying like there’s no end in sight … each of these are moments of strength because you’re being honest and true to your feelings. No one can tell you how to mourn or how to “recover” from this loss because no one will experience it the way you do. Same for your parents, same for anyone who has experienced a tragedy. You really are a strong person.
TraceyMay 22, 2009 at 2:09 pm
Wow, your brother was an incredible artist! Just so you know, having an elephant with its trunk up is a sign of good luck! Looks like John truly is with you, bringing you lots of good luck through his talent.
By the way, thanks for the great spa recommendation!
Have a great weekend!
Kristin @ Iowa Girl EatsMay 22, 2009 at 2:10 pm
Wow – that’s incredible – and so nice that you have something handmade from your brother. Your trip to the gym sounds awesome!
spicygranolaMay 22, 2009 at 2:13 pm
That sandwich looks mouthwatering. That elephant statue is very well done. It reminds of similar pieces they sell everywhere in sri lanka. I hope that you have fun with your fancy drink tonight, can’t wait to see pictures. have fun!
Christie @ BeadluvahMay 22, 2009 at 2:13 pm
Wow, that elephant is amazing!
SharonMay 22, 2009 at 2:15 pm
It is so hard to get through the day sometimes. Big hugs to you and your family.
RachelMay 22, 2009 at 2:18 pm
The balance of strength AND breaking down is what’s admirable. Both are part of the grieving process. I am so grateful that you are able to share your “real-person-ness” on your blog 🙂
JennyMay 22, 2009 at 2:21 pm
I am glad that you are sharing both your strength and your struggles Jenna, you are truly amazing and wonderful!
I love having cocktails with friends “just because” there’s no better reason! 🙂
Incredible elephant, I really like it!
Moran (The Running Addict)May 22, 2009 at 2:26 pm
WOW I cannot believe even Ryan liked the Green Monster!
nicole r.May 22, 2009 at 2:30 pm
Since you’re a yogini like me, i thought you might find this nice to know:
Ganesha tends to be one of the friendlier, more well-loved Hindu gods; in fact, he is worshipped voraciously throughout Hindiusm, regardless of region or sect. He’s the patron of my yoga studio—my teacher LOVES him, and we have Ganeshas everywhere! Ganesha has large ears to encourage careful listening, a big head for careful thought, carries an axe in his right hand to free other from bonds of attachment, carries a rope in his left hand to pull you closer to your highest goal, his third hand (like most gods’) is raised in blessing, he has a large stomach for the peaceful digestion of all in life (good and bad), and has prasada at his feet to indicate that all good things are at your feet for your taking. Ganesha is known as the god of luck/good fortune and is the remover of obstacles–he’s around to help you out on your path to your ultimate happiness, and he wants to make sure nothing stops you from attaining that highest goal. BUT, he also places obstacles in your path—either to teach you a lesson that will be helpful later, or to check you if you’re being lazy/arrogant/asleep/blind.
Ganesha is an elephant.
Maybe your brother is your Ganesha 🙂
SheriMay 22, 2009 at 2:32 pm
The elephant is great…he was very talented! What a great gift to have! I should try and get my husband to dring a green monster…he does not like veggies very much either!
lk- healthy deliciousMay 22, 2009 at 2:39 pm
that elephant is awesome! I never knew there was a such thing as AP ceramics. huh
yay for Ryan liking the green monster! Have fun tonight!
BizMay 22, 2009 at 2:41 pm
I am sure it hasn’t been easy keeping it together these last few weeks – hang in there!
I love the elephant!!
KelseyMay 22, 2009 at 2:49 pm
Amazing job with the smoothie!!! :]
The veggie sandwich looks absolutely wonderful! I might steal this idea for my lunch tomorrow….
And the elephant is so great. I took ceramics in high school and while it was fun, it was pretty tough. This is outstanding and you have every right to be proud and attached to it!!
beerabMay 22, 2009 at 2:50 pm
Wow that elephant is amazing- and when the trunk is up that will bring you good luck 🙂
I just wanted to say I really enjoy reading your blog. I’m sorry to hear about your brother. I’ve lost family members myself and with each passing day the pain become more bearable. There are times I get sad when I think of them, and sometimes I still cry, but other times I can think fondly about them and be okay. Take all the time you need to grieve for your brother. *hugz*
Recipes for CreativityMay 22, 2009 at 2:50 pm
1. That elephant is awesome!!
2. Working from home advice from me (working at home last six months): set a schedule for yourself and stick to it like it’s a “real” job. Which it is. It does not need to be even close to forty hours a week, FYI. My “work” week is Monday through Thursday, 9am to 3pm, with plenty of meal and cat-petting breaks. It took me a couple months to figure out I needed a schedule, but having one has made my work from home life much better. Good luck!
jessnycMay 22, 2009 at 2:56 pm
your brother’s elephant is very cool! i love the expression on his face 🙂
emilyMay 22, 2009 at 2:57 pm
I love the pacaderm, it is realistic and cute all at the same time. You can tell Ryan he is braver than I am – I am almost glab my blender konked out before I had to try the obiligatory blogger green smoothie!
AnneMay 22, 2009 at 3:11 pm
I am impressed that you got him to drink a smoothie with spinach in it, I can just imagine my husband’s face now…The elephant is a beautiful piece as well, I am glad I found your blog!
MayaMay 22, 2009 at 3:16 pm
I LOVE elephants and John’s elephant sculpture is gorgeous!
The Novice BerkerMay 22, 2009 at 3:17 pm
Oh, Jenna. I hope you didn’t feel pressured to put a strong face on because of all of our praises about your strength. I know that losing John was and IS so unspeakably painful for you. It’s okay to be sad and to NOT be strong. You’re human like the rest of us, and we love and appreciate you for being yourself, not for being a superwoman!
John’s sculpture is amazing. I hope you keep it somewhere lovely in your & Ryan’s place, where you can look at it every day and be reminded of his talent.
SamanthaMay 22, 2009 at 3:19 pm
Love the elephant…what a wonderful piece of memorabilia/art!
That hummus veggie sandwich is mouthwatering. YUM!
Yay to Mom for going to spin and to Ryan for jumping ship on the green monster…they’re so yummy!
Mara @ What's For Dinner?May 22, 2009 at 3:19 pm
If only I could get the fiance to try a green monster…
BecMay 22, 2009 at 3:19 pm
Aww I am sorry your feeling down and I can’t even imagine what you are going through but just know it takes time and you need to allow yourself the time to heal. That class sounds fantastic and it must have been great for you and your mom to share some fun sweaty time together!
JenniMay 22, 2009 at 3:27 pm
Wow! I *heart* elephants and that is amazing! You are doing an awesome job of keeping your brother’s spirit alive and well in your heart. Good days and bad, life will continue on and he will never be forgotten. You ARE strong but you don’t have to a rock for us! We all understand some moments/days are harder than others. We all love you!
lainbMay 22, 2009 at 3:45 pm
I can’t belive how much Ryan looks like a guy I work with. I mean, they could seriously be brothers!!!!!!! I bet they’re related somewhere along the line.
HeatherBakesMay 22, 2009 at 3:49 pm
That elephant is beautiful!
So thanks to your post yesterday, I just HAD to head over to anthro today… what a great sale. Ended up with a cute shirt- thanks for the tip 🙂
NicoleMay 22, 2009 at 4:26 pm
That is such a beautiful sculpture!
Michelle HisaeMay 22, 2009 at 4:27 pm
That sandwich looks incredible! And wow, your brother’s elephant is so cool!! You’ll have that for years to come…
KTMay 22, 2009 at 4:30 pm
Hi Jenna! I’m sorry you didn’t have such a great start to the day… I just wanted to share with you that I just bought PB2 online, and I’m so excited! I couldn’t get your PB mousse out of my head, so I decided to bite the bullet and shell out 30 bucks for the 2PB and 1PBCHOCO pack.
I’m curious if you think it will be good with non-greek yogurt? I swear, there is NO greek yogurt in all of Canada!
Thanks so much and I hope you have a pleasent weekend.
MattMay 22, 2009 at 4:31 pm
Nothing beats a sweaty workout class!
skinnyrunnerMay 22, 2009 at 4:39 pm
sounds like a great workout! have a fun time tonight!
KimMay 22, 2009 at 4:39 pm
Love the elephant! 🙂
Have a nice evening & try to relax.
MaryBeMay 22, 2009 at 5:00 pm
You are such a brave girl. It will get just a teeny bit easier everyday.
Can’t wait to hear the martini review
*Andrea*May 22, 2009 at 5:17 pm
that elephant is AMAZING! i suck at art stuff but always ADMIRE people, like your brother, who are skilled in artistic things. i know things must be tough for you but the fact that you’ve made some positive choices – moving in with ryan, a career change – is so inspiring!
megMay 22, 2009 at 5:38 pm
Love the elephant!
Hugs to you!
kirstenMay 22, 2009 at 5:57 pm
the elephant is amazing!! I would love to see more pictures of John’s work ! Also yay for Ryan for liking his first green monster 🙂
PriyankaMay 22, 2009 at 6:27 pm
That is an awesome piece of work! Have a great evening!!
MJMay 22, 2009 at 6:29 pm
Hang in there – it’ll be a roller-coaster for a while, with some “ambushes” when you think you’re fine and something just smacks you in the stomach emotionally and it all floods back, and some days you’re doing better (and you’re not being disloyal to loving and missing John by feeling better, if you happen to have a moment of guilt – living your happiest life is what he’d want and the best tribute to him). You don’t have to be strong all the time – you don’t have to be anything at all except honest and patient with yourself so you can take care of your needs and those of your family.
So do you eat the overnight oats cold, or heat them up? Maybe cold would be good in the summer heat…..
Saw this article in the NYT and thought you might want to check out the competition for the wine gig, maybe get some ideas
The elephant is quite impressive. Is there enough of John’s art available for you to host a showing as another celebration of his life? Maybe at his old school or a local favorite spot willing to donate the space. You could serve the Goode wine (watch the liability issues), get appetizers from some of the places you write about (for blog coverage maybe), and charge a nominal cover that you donate to a cause important to John or your whole family.
RunToFinishMay 22, 2009 at 7:03 pm
D still won’t go near my smoothies, but I don’t put as much fruit in them as you do…so I can’t really blame him.. he things veggies are scary unless they are called potatoes. 🙂
love the beautiful elephant! I made something once that I think turned in to an ash tray, but I’m pretty sure it was supposed to be like a cat
KatieMay 22, 2009 at 8:13 pm
I love that elephant! I collect them 🙂 John was so talented, and I’m sure he knows how much you appreciate him. Thank you for your continuing honesty. We know you’re a real person, and breaking down doesn’t make you any less of a strong woman.
SusanMay 23, 2009 at 12:30 am
i love the elephant! it really is beautiful! and i love anthropologie too–it’s such a weakness of mine when i go back to the states. i could spend HOURS there and i even admit to shopping in several of their different stores!
HeatherMay 23, 2009 at 6:06 am
YAY RYAN!!! I don’t know if I could get my boyfriend to try one. My new favorite combo is 2 big cups of spinach, 1/2 c coconut water, a banana and a few strawberries – divine!
I’m so sorry to hear that you’re having a hard time, but it’s totally normal and your strength will find you when you really need it. You’re still grieving and you will be a long time so it’s understandable. Still, you are incredibly strong and we all recognize that and applaud you for it.
Lastly, your brother’s elephant is AMAZING!!! So wonderful that you found out about this hidden talent of his and now you will always have this in your life to remember him.
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